Scottish Technical Textiles Manufacturer Expands Footprint in China with GBP 3 million Investment

J&D Wilkie, a company that specializes in the manufacture of technical textiles, is now looking eastward to expand its business and boost profitability. As part of this offshore growth strategy, J&D Wilkie is investing in a new GBP 3 million factory in China. The factory will be set up in Jianxing, located near Shanghai. The BBC reported that this new business plan was announced by Nicola Sturgeon, the First Minister of Scotland, during an official visit to China this week.

J&D Wilkie, based in Kirriemuir, Angus, has been in operation in Scotland since 1868. The company, which started with flax and jute manufacturing in Scotland, has since moved on to produce a wide range of fabrics for commercial, military as well as industrial use. Since the company began operations in China about eight years ago, it has almost doubled its production capacities.

According to Wilkie, with the company now making a new commitment to investing in China, about 90 jobs back home in Scotland will be safeguarded. The new facility in China will now feature an integrated weaving and spinning unit which will be able to boost the company’s current yarn producing capabilities. The company expects that this expansion in China will give an additional boost to its presence in Europe.

The director of the company, Bob Low, said that the company is considering new opportunities for expansion, and hopes that its successful expansion in China will serve as an example for other firms on how to expand in foreign markets on a sustained scale, and harness the advantages of the same.

The privately-owned company, which has been in the textile business for 14 decades, says that Chinese businesses are showing a greater inclination toward products that blend innovation and quality.

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