Gildan chooses Rowan for new plant, 170 jobs

  • Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012 1:17 p.m.
    UPDATED: Wednesday, December 19, 2012 1:21 p.m.

SALISBURY — Rowan County has landed the new Gildan yarn-spinning plant and up to 200 jobs.

Gildan Activewear Inc. plans to create about 170 jobs and invest more than $50 million in Rowan in the next two years, Gov. Bev Perdue announced today. Employment in Rowan eventually could reach 200, Perdue said.

Rowan was competing against a community in Georgia for the yarn-spinning operation.

Gildan received incentives from the state and Rowan County. The company plans to buy and retrofit the shuttered 400,000-square-foot PGT Windows building located at 2121 Heilig Road.

PGT, which also received government incentives, pulled out in 2010.

Gildan, through its yarn-spinning subsidiary CanAm Yarns LLC, plans to open a new ring-spinning facility in Salisbury to support projected growth.

Gildan markets and manufactures basic family clothing and is expanding in U.S. and international markets.

Rowan County commissioners recently approved incentives to support the planned project. Chairman Jim Sides, who cast the lone vote against incentives for Gildan, today expressed his appreciation of the investment and creation of new jobs, according to a news release.

“We are excited that Gildan Activewear has chosen Rowan County, and we look forward to working with them,” Sides said in the statement. “We appreciate the opportunities these jobs will provide our citizens and their families.”

Gildan currently employs 100 people at a yarn-spinning facility operated by CanAm in Bladen County, and 294 people at one of its distribution centers in Rockingham County. 

Compensation will vary by job function, but the average annual payroll will be more than $6.1 million, plus benefits. The Rowan County average wage is $36,712. 

“North Carolina continues to be a top choice for companies looking to expand or relocate their operations,” Perdue said. “North Carolina is a tremendous place to do business and we have a knowledgeable and skilled workforce, especially when it comes to our heritage industries like textiles.”

CanAm formed in October 2003 as a joint venture between Frontier Spinning Mills Inc. and Gildan. Recently, Gildan purchased Frontier’s interest and became the sole owner of CanAm. The company manufactures yarn which it sells exclusively to Gildan for its knitting facilities worldwide. 

“We appreciate the cooperation and assistance we have received from the North Carolina Department of Commerce and Rowan County elected and appointed officials during our site selection process,” said Chuck Ward, Gildan’s senior vice president for yarn spinning.

To help facilitate this project, the state Economic Investment Committee today voted to award an incentive grant to CanAm. The grants are awarded to new and expanding businesses and industrial projects whose benefits exceed the costs to the state and would not be undertaken in North Carolina without the grant.

The company is eligible to receive a grant equal to 65 percent of the state personal income withholding taxes derived from the creation of new jobs for each of the first 10 years of operations in which the company meets annual performance targets.

If CanAm meets the targets called for under the agreement and sustains them for 10 years, the grant could yield $1.55 million in maximum benefits for the company.

In addition, up to $275,000 could be added to the state’s Utility Fund for infrastructure improvements in economically distressed counties. When a Job Development Investment Grant is awarded in the state’s more economically prosperous counties such as Rowan, 15 percent of the grant is allocated to the Utility Fund to encourage economic development in less prosperous counties.

Other partners who assisted with this project include: the N.C. Department of Commerce, N.C. Community Colleges, Rowan County, RowanWorks Economic Development Commission and Duke Energy.

For more information about Gildan, including job opportunities, visit

Notice about comments: is pleased to offer readers the ability to comment on stories. We expect our readers to engage in lively, yet civil discourse. cannot promise that readers will not occasionally find offensive or inaccurate comments posted in the comments area. Responsibility for the statements posted lies with the person submitting the comment, not If you find a comment that is objectionable, please click "report abuse" and we will review it for possible removal. Please be reminded, however, that in accordance with our Terms of Use and federal law, we are under no obligation to remove any third party comments posted on our website. Full terms and conditions can be read here.

Do not post the following:

  • Potentially libelous statements or damaging innuendo.
  • Obscene, explicit, or racist language.
  • Personal attacks, insults or threats.
  • The use of another person's real name to disguise your identity.
  • Comments unrelated to the story.