Archive for September, 2011
We are pleased to announce that we have entered into a purchasing agreement for a minimum of one and a half million pounds of CRAiLAR Fibre with Brilliant Global Knitwear. The Hong Kong based private label knitwear manufacturer produces a broad spectrum of sweater and accessory items in natural fibres for globally recognized brands. The agreement is to commence in October 2011.
“This agreement represents our third purchasing agreement since March and brings our total client roster to seven global brands,” said Ken Barker, CEO of NAT. “Brilliant works with the most recognizable brands and retailers in North America and we intend to demonstrate the significant capabilities of CRAiLAR Flax to perform seamlessly within its portfolio, while integrating a sustainable, all-natural fiber into its textile mix and its consumer product story.”
We are pleased to announce that we have entered into a short term CRAiLAR® Flax fiber development agreement with Westex Inc., the premier manufacturer of flame resistant and arc rated protective clothing fabrics. The development agreement begins in September 2011 to support evaluation of processing CRAiLAR® Flax fiber for Westex products used in electrical maintenance, electric and gas utilities, oil, gas, petrochemical, chemical, military, and ferrous metals industries.
“With Westex, we have an opportunity to evaluate CRAiLAR® as an apparel and uniform ingredient across a number of industrial and municipal categories where flame resistance is critical,” said Ken Barker, CEO of NAT. “This agreement is a logical progression of our previously announced development agreement in the work wear category, and further illustrates the diverse industry applications of CRAiLAR Flax fiber and its potential to enhance performance in those categories.
Since March 2011, we have signed development or purchasing agreements with HanesBrands, Georgia-Pacific, Levi Strauss & Company, Cintas Corporation, and Ashland Inc.
About Westex Inc.
Established in 1919, Westex has more than 50 years of experience in the manufacturing of flame resistant fabrics. It is the premier manufacturer of cotton and cotton-blended flame resistant and arc rated protective clothing fabrics which include Westex® UltraSoft®, UltraSoft AC® and Indura® fabrics. It is headquartered in Chicago, Ill. and can be found online at www.westex.com.
We will holding our 2011 Annual General Meeting at 2:00pm (PST) on Thursday, September 15 2011, . This years AGM takes place at the award winning, green-designed Vancouver Convention Centre.
Naturally Advanced Technologies management will hold a presentation with it’s shareholders to discuss corporate growth and developments. Registration begins at 1:00pm.
We are pleased to announce the appointment of Thomas C. Robinson, a 27 year veteran of the textiles industry, as our Chief Operating Officer. Robinson joins us from International Textile Group (ITG), where he was most recently Vice President of Cotton Operations Planning and Technical Support in the company’s apparel division. Robinson’s appointment coincides with our imminent plan to establish a permanent production facility in Kingstree, S.C. that will replace our testing facility established there in August 2010. Jason Finnis, co-founder and immediate past COO, will become Chief Innovation Officer, responsible for innovation of sustainable bast fibers, cellulose pulp, and their resulting by-products.
“Tom is an excellent organizational fit for NAT whose appointment comes at a strategic time for the company,” said Ken Barker, CEO of NAT. “He will assume leadership of our manufacturing facility currently in development, and brings with him experience launching four international manufacturing platforms. Tom’s presence will allow us to advance current and future development and purchasing agreements with global partners.”
Robinson began his textiles career in 1984 with Burlington Industries, the leading full service apparel solutions organization for apparel manufacturers and retailers. From 1984 to 2004 he held a number of leadership roles for the company, culminating in Executive Vice President of Manufacturing and Operations Planning. His experience included greenfield startup manufacturing facilities, as well as oversight of multi-plant operations throughout the U.S., China, Mexico, India, Vietnam and Nicaragua. ITG later purchased Burlington Industries to become one of its six current companies, and positioned it alongside Cone Mills, one of the premier denim manufacturers and wholesalers in the world. In 2004, Robinson became Vice President of Operations Planning and Customer Support at Cone, where he was responsible for global denim operations planning, customer service, technical product development and quality control. He played a key operations role in the integration of Burlington Industries and Cone Mills as they each became part of ITG.
Robinson brings with him deep textile experience with a focus on understanding the performance and customer impact of natural fibers in the spinning, weaving and knitting process. He will be our senior-most executive permanently located in the Eastern U.S., where we plan to install a fully integrated flax fiber decortication and CRAiLAR enzymatic processing facility with the capacity to produce 650,000 pounds of CRAiLAR Flax fiber per week. We expect to be ready to commence production in Q1 of 2012, ramping up to full-scale capacity by Q2.
Robinson is a 3rd generation textile industry veteran with a BA in economics and business from North Carolina State University, and an Executive Program Certificate from University of North Carolina.
Finnis, co-founder and now CIO, will increase his focus upon our deep relationships with research partners, including Canada’s National Research Council, United States Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service (USDA – ARS), and partners like HanesBrands. This newly created role will focus on ways to improve NAT’s processing techniques, throughput efficiencies, and yield.
We are pleased to announce that we have entered into a three year CRAiLAR® Flax fiber supply agreement with Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products LP starting Sept. 1, 2011.
In March of 2011 we announced a short-term purchasing agreement with Georgia-Pacific using CRAiLAR Flax fibers. This allowed Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products to purchase CRAiLAR Flax fiber from NAT for additional product testing.
“It is extremely gratifying to conclude this commercialization agreement for CRAiLAR Flax fibers with Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products,” said Ken Barker, CEO of NAT. “Our agreement with Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products holds considerable potential in the fields of use indicated thus far, and we will be able to continue to explore further uses for CRAiLAR Flax fiber.”
We are pleased to announce the appointment of Jay Nalbach as our Chief Marketing Officer, a newly-created position. With more than 16 years in the sports and fashion industries, Nalbach adds deep experience in brand and product marketing as well as go-to-market strategy to the NAT executive team. In this new position, Nalbach will lead all marketing and key partner relationships for the company.
“We’re very excited to welcome Jay to the team at this critical point in our company history,” said Ken Barker, CEO of NAT. “His experience growing business and securing market share for major global brands like adidas, Reebok and Fila will impact the adoption of our CRAiLAR fiber as we move ahead with a focus on large global brand partnerships.”
Prior to joining NAT, Nalbach served as Brand Director at adidas Group Japan KK, leading the execution of subsidiary brand Reebok’s first ever 360-degree product and marketing campaigns in Japan. Before this he was Global Head of Men’s Lifestyle Footwear for Reebok International. This came at the critical post-acquisition period of Reebok by adidas.
Nalbach also held senior roles with adidas AG, including key work with Reebok, adidas Originals, Foot Locker Europe in footwear, apparel, supply chain and account management. His time with adidas, where he began in 1995, paused briefly for a nearly three-year senior role with Fila International.
Nalbach’s deep experience has given him remarkable global exposure, having held positions in the U.S., UK, Japan, The Netherlands and working extensively in Italy and Germany. Long-term, NAT intends for this to be a significant asset to its growth plans.
“The science behind our CRAiLAR fiber is unlike anything available in the world today,” said Nalbach. “From the way the fiber is sustainably grown and processed, to how it is integrated with global brands like Hanes, this represents a massive opportunity in terms of how we live as consumers and how the brands you love enable you to feel better about buying their products.”
After a significant period of research and development, NAT has signed purchasing or development agreements with HanesBrands, Georgia-Pacific, Levi Strauss and Company, Cintas Corporation and Ashland Inc. since March 2011.