Burlington Sells Divisions In One Phase Of Restructuring
GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) _ Burlington Industries plans to sell three industrial fabrics divisions under a restructuring aimed at helping pay off debt incurred when it went private in a $2.5 billion leveraged buyout, the company announced Thursday.
Divisions to be sold have combined annual sales of $300 million and include the company’s Precision Fabrics, Glass Fabrics and Industrial Fabrics divisions.
The divisions produce fabrics for the electronics, aerospace, military and automotive industries. Each of the three divisions operates independently, and together represent the largest industrial textiles business in the world, Burlington stated.
The company also said Thursday it would sell its Ramseur, N.C. spinning and weaving plant.
Bryant Haskins, a company spokesman, said the three divisions and the Ramseur plant employed a total of 3,300 people.
″I would stress that we’re not talking about putting people out on the street right now,″ Haskins said. ″This is not a gloom and doom story for the people involved.″
Burlington said last month that it had to raise about $900 million after taxes from the sales of various units in order to meet principal and interest payments due over the next two years.
A group led by Morgan Stanley & Co. took Burlington private in a leveraged buyout last month, ending a months-long bidding war against a rival group led by New York financier Asher Edelman and Montreal-based Dominion Textile Inc.
In a leveraged buyout, a company is acquired mostly with borrowed funds that are repaid with the target company’s cash flow or with money raised by the sale of its assets.
Under the restructuring aimed at helping pay off the debt, Burlington earlier eliminated about 525 jobs at the Greensboro corporate headquarters and its Jamestown research and development center, 60 corporate and marketing jobs in New York and 350 jobs from Burlington’s 25 divisions.
Burlington employs about 43,000 people at 84 plants in 10 states and four foreign countries.
The Burlington Precision Fabrics division produces woven and non-woven synthetic fabrics used for products that include typewriter ribbons, home furnishing, medical and industrial supplies and parachutes.
The Burlington Glass Fabrics division produces fiberglass fabrics, tapes and high-temperature insulating materials for high-tech uses, plus glass, Kevlar and carbon fibers used in the aerospace industry.
Burlington Industrial Fabrics Co., manufactures heavy synthetic fabrics for military, space and commerical applications.
The three divisions are headquartered in Greensboro. The Burlington Precision Fabrics division also has manufacturing facilities in Jamestown, N.C., and Vinton, Va. The Burlington Glass Fabrics division has plants in Altavista and South Hill, Va., and the Burlington Industrial Fabrics Co., has facilities in Kernersville, N.C., and Cheraw, S.C.