INVISTA Venture Opens US$128 Million Spandex Plant in China

Kicks off company’s global effort to add 50 kilotons of fiber production in next three years

FOSHAN, Guangdong – 1 November 2006 A new INVISTA and Foshan Plastics Group Co., Ltd. joint-venture spandex production plant has opened in Foshan, Guangdong. The facility, which represents an investment of US$12 8 million, is part of INVISTA's new global growth initiative, which would add about 50 kilotons of LYCRA ® and ELASPAN ® spandex fibers in three years.

More than 200 guests were on hand to witness the opening ceremony, including senior leaders of the Foshan municipal government, the Sanshui district government and the Xinan town government. Bill Ghitis, INVISTA's Global President for Apparel, William Yeoh, INVISTA's Executive Vice President for Apparel in Asia Pacific, and Feng Zhao Zheng, Chairman of Foshan Plastics Group Co. Ltd officiated at the ceremony.

The new plant, situated in the Xinan FSPG Industrial Park in Sanshui District, represents the largest foreign investment ever made in Guangdong's fiber industry. Using state-of-the-art production technology, the plant will provide 12 kilotons of annual capacity when both of its production lines are fully operational.

According to Ghitis, INVISTA already has plans to build another spandex production facility in China, with an aim to commence production by the end of 2008.

“We also plan to expand and upgrade our existing facilities and ventures in Brazil, the UK, the United States, and Asia, including our venture in Singapore and the LDZ venture in eastern China ,” said Ghitis. “These projects are planned for 2007.”

“Beyond these growth initiatives, we have acquisition targets and other growth opportunities,” Ghitis added, “ Our bottom line is that we are – and plan to remain – the world's largest, lowest cost, most profitable producer of high-quality spandex fibers, including our world-leading LYCRA ® brand. ”

“We are also putting significant emphasis on the second element of our growth vision, which is to expand our role as an innovation powerhouse,” continued Ghitis.

Among other efforts, INVISTA is collaborating closely with targeted universities and companies to develop technologies that will bring innovations to the apparel marketplace.

The company has begun a technology sponsorship program with four universities in China, including East China University of Science and Technology, TongJi University and DongHua University in Shanghai, as well as Zhejiang University in Hangzhou. Another initiative with academia, details of which will be announced shortly, is an industrial liaison program with the Hong Kong Polytechnic University.

In addition, INVISTA is preparing to site a new research and development facility in China to support the development and commercialization of new fiber, fabric and garment innovations. The facility is expected to open in the first quarter of 2008

INVISTA began selling spandex fiber in China in the 1970s. Its presence has grown to encompass sales and marketing offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, with joint-venture manufacturing plants in Qingpu and Lianyungang.

INVISTA's flagship premium spandex fiber, LYCRA ® , enjoys extremely high brand recognition in the market with LYCRA ® fiber fabrics preferred to fabrics with generic spandex by more than 80 per cent of consumers in China (Source: RISC 2004).

The company has firmly established its annual INVISTA Rendez-Vous trade show as an industry fixture in China. Having taken place 25-28 October in Shanghai , Rendez-Vous 2006 comprised more than 70 exhibition booths and displays from more than 50 associates and customers.

"Consumers are increasingly looking for garments that offer more than style and fashion. They want clothing that will look good, and stay that way and they want improved performance from garments that fit better and are more comfortable to wear," said William Yeoh. "Meeting those needs is what INVISTA is all about. It's what drives the kind of innovations and investments we are announcing today, all of which are aimed at giving the China market the best value for the products and services it demands. "

INVISTA also created one of the first ever multi-dimensional branding programs with the LYCRA ® My Hero promotion – a China-wide integrated marketing campaign which combined a 29-episode TV series. The top three TV programs in China, with a national audience of more than 30 million viewers, were tied in with direct marketing and roadshows in various cities.