ATLANTA—Automation designer SoftWear signs a manufacturing deal with the Chinese firm Tianyuan Garments Company. Tianyuan produces apparel such as T-shirts for Adidas. Through the agreement, Tianyuan plans to use SoftWear’s proprietary technology, fabric mapping and cutting robots, to produce T-shirts for the brand at a recently purchased plant in Little Rock, Arkansas.
China Daily reports that the firm plans to install 21 production lines, and estimates labor costs at 33 cents per-shirt.
“When fully operational, the system will make one T-shirt every 22 seconds,” Tang Xinhong, chairman of Tianyuan Garments tells the news outlet. “We will produce 800,000 T-shirts a day for Adidas."
While the operation uses mostly automated technology, Tianyuan still expects to add 400 new jobs to Arkansas with the facility.
The deal marks an ongoing trend in the state of attracting Chinese large-scale manufacturing. Governor Asa Hutchinson has actively pursued foreign firms to inject new money and jobs in the region, including a recent $410 million deal with another Chinese firm to run a yarn-spinning facility in Forrest City, Arkansas.