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Polartec: A Textile Success Story That Sets Company Up for a Sale

Retirement didn’t really agree with Gary Smith — and that’s been the major game-changer for Polartec.
Under the direction of Smith, chief executive officer of the Andover, Mass.-based fabric producer, Polartec went from the verge of liquidation to a profitable business that provides active and outdoor brands — and now luxury fashion labels — with a variety of performance fabrics. Its most recent innovation is Power Air, a fabric that cuts down on shedding in synthetic fleece that hit the market this winter exclusively in Adidas products and has started rolling out to other brands.
As a result of the turnaround, Polartec’s private equity owners have “begun an active process to sell the company,” Smith said. While nothing is imminent, having private equity investors makes it inevitable a sale will happen. “It took a long time to turn this thing around,” the ceo admitted.
But Polartec’s about-face almost didn’t happen.
Smith was the president of Timberland’s Outdoor Group and senior vice president of its supply chain. He exited Timberland shortly before it was sold to VF Corp. After a career that included being a partner in McKinsey & Co., he thought it would be an ideal time to ditch the corporate world and engage

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Via:: https://wwd.com/fashion-news/textiles/polartec-a-textile-success-story-that-sets-company-up-for-a-sale-1203080503/