There are more than 2000 suppliers and manufacturers of towels and related fiber products. In what is a very dynamic industry, domestic cotton production for one has dropped 70% since its peak in 1997 because of automation and competition from imported textile and apparel products.
Companies of various value pretence are competing on the market, including Gildan Acivewear Inc (GIL) of current $7.59 billion and Unifi Inc (UFI) of $533.84 million.
The U.S. textile output has not yet recovered from the sharp downturns of 2008 and 2009. In a positive note, it generated $57 billion in foreign shipments in 2013, or 5% more than the prior year.
Tifico Fiber (TFCO. JK) is based in Indonesia and primarily engaged in manufacturing polyester fibers. On the other end of the apparel cycle are retailers like Paris-based Kering SA (KER: FP), the luxury designer of Gucci, Puma and other clothes and footgear brands.