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'Driving' force cruises into the future.

While primarily a roll goods supplier, Troy Mills, Troy, NH, has also emerged throughout the past decade as a major supplier of end products, selling molded automotive components for various car applications.

The company, which projects 1993 sales of $42 million ($15 million of which are end products), has been manufacturing nylon, polypropylene and polyester needlepunched carpet for automotive applications for years. About seven years ago, it began manufacturing thermoformable composites that incorporated a spunbonded backing material such as Freudenberg's "Lutradur" for application in uses such as door panels, package shelves and a complete trunk for the Lincoln Continental.

While Troy's strength remains in the automotive market, it has been concentrating on diversification as well, broadening its scope to loosen its ties to the volatile automotive market. Other product areas for Troy - although at this time served only by Troy's roll goods - are apparel - both lining and shells, industrial filtration and acoustical wallcovering materials.

The automotive business, however, remains Troy's mainstay, and the company is now doing well after weathering several rough years during the economic decline and stalled automotive market. "The market barometer," said vice president-marketing Bernt Reudiger, "is our long term contracts with the automotive companies. We are serving the business of the future and we see a positive outlook." Troy supplies U.S. automobile companies as well as foreign transplants, which Mr. Reudiger said look to domestic sourcing once they are settled in the U.S. Approximately 90% of Troy's sales are U.S. based, although the company also exports to Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and Europe.

For the future, Troy believes that composites will be the way to go. "We are seeing more composites and more exotic mixes of products; value added is the way to survive," said Mr. Reudiger. "Those companies that do not forward integrate will have problems in the future," he said, also predicting more business partnerships between suppliers and customers as companies work to build long term relationships.

"We are seeing a high level of sophistication now in the industry," he said. "This continues at an ever-increasing rate. Troy is definitely a leader in the high tech end of needlepunching technology."
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Title Annotation:Troy Mills
Author:Noonan, Ellen
Publication:Nonwovens Industry
Article Type:Company Profile
Date:Oct 1, 1993
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