This excerpt taken from the HBI 8-K filed Sep 5, 2006.
Our Competitive Strengths
Strong Brands with Leading Market Positions. Our brands have a strong heritage in the apparel essentials industry. According to NPD, our brands possess either the number one or number two market position in the United States in most of the product categories in which we compete. Our brands enjoy high awareness among consumers according to a 2006 brand equity analysis by Millward Brown Market Research. According to a 2005 survey of consumer brand awareness by Womens Wear Daily, we own three of the top five most recognized apparel and accessory brands among women in the United States, with Hanes (number one), Leggs (number three) and Hanes Her Way (number four) (now referred to as Hanes). According to NPD, our largest brand, Hanes, is the top selling apparel brand in the United States by units sold. Our creative, focused advertising campaigns have been an important element in the continued success and visibility of our brands. We employ a multimedia marketing plan involving national television, radio, Internet, direct mail and in-store advertising, as well as targeted celebrity endorsements, to communicate the key features and benefits of our brands to consumers. We believe that these marketing programs reinforce and enhance our strong brand awareness across our product categories.
High-Volume, Core Essentials Focus. We sell high-volume, frequently replenished apparel essentials. The majority of our core styles continue from year to year, with variations only in color, fabric or design details, and are frequently replenished by consumers. For example, we believe the average U.S. consumer makes 3.5 trips to retailers to purchase mens underwear and 4.5 trips to purchase panties annually. We believe that our status as a high-volume seller of core apparel essentials creates a more stable and predictable revenue base and reduces our exposure to dramatic fashion shifts often observed in the general apparel industry.
Significant Scale of Operations. We are the largest seller of apparel essentials in the United States as measured by sales. As an example of the scale of our operations, we manufactured and sold over 400 million t-shirts (innerwear and outerwear) and almost half a billion pairs of socks in fiscal 2005. Most of our products are sold to large retailers which have high-volume demands. We have met the demands of our customers by developing vertically integrated operations and an extensive network of owned facilities and third-party manufacturers over a broad geographic footprint. We believe that we are able to leverage our significant scale of
operations to provide us with greater manufacturing efficiencies, purchasing power and product design, marketing and customer management resources than our smaller competitors.
Strong Customer Relationships. We sell our products primarily through large, high-volume retailers, including mass merchants, department stores and national chains. We have strong, long-term relationships with our top customers, including relationships of over ten years with each of our top ten customers. The size and operational scale of the high-volume retailers with which we do business require extensive category and product knowledge and specialized services regarding the quantity, quality and planning of orders. In the late 1980s, we undertook a shift in our approach to our relationships with our largest customers when we sought to align significant parts of our organization with corresponding parts of their organizations. For example, we are organized into teams that sell to and service our customers across a range of functional areas, such as demand planning, replenishment and logistics. We also have entered into customer-specific programs such as the introduction in 2004 of C9 by Champion products marketed and sold through Target stores. Through these efforts, we have become the largest apparel essentials supplier to many of our customers.
Significant Cash Flow Generation. Due to our strong brands and market position, our business has historically generated significant cash flow. In fiscal 2003, 2004 and 2005, we generated $416.7 million, $410.2 million and $446.8 million, respectively, of cash from operating activities net of cash used in investing activities. Our cash flow gives us the flexibility to create shareholder value by investing in our business, reducing debt and returning capital to our shareholders.
Strong Management Team. We have strengthened our management team through the addition of experienced executives in key leadership roles. Richard Noll, our Chief Executive Officer, has extensive management experience in the apparel and consumer products industries. During his 14-year tenure at Sara Lee, Mr. Noll led Sara Lees sock and hosiery businesses, Sara Lee Direct and Sara Lee Mexico (all of which are now part of our business), as well as the Sara Lee Bakery Group and Sara Lee Australia. Lee Wyatt, our Chief Financial Officer, has broad experience in executive financial management, including tenures as Chief Financial Officer at Sonic Automotive, a publicly traded automotive aftermarket supplier, and Sealy Corporation. Gerald Evans, our Chief Supply Chain Officer and Michael Flatow, our General Manager, Wholesale Americas, also add significant experience and leadership to our management team. The additions of Messrs. Noll and Wyatt complement the leadership and experience provided by Lee Chaden, our Executive Chairman, who has extensive experience within the apparel and consumer products industries.