Berkshire Hathaway Inc. said its Fruit of the Loom Inc. subsidiary saw operating earnings improve “significantly” in 2010 due to improved manufacturing efficiencies and cost management efforts. Besides FTL, the segment includes the Russell athletic apparel and sporting goods business and the Vanity Fair Brands women's intimate lines, according to Berkshire's just-released 10K.

Other than Russell Athletic and Russell Outdoor, brands under the Russell umbrella include Brooks, JERZEES, Spalding, Bike Athletic,  Dudley Sports and AAI (American Athletic, Inc. Vanity Fair's brands also include, Lily of France, Vassarette, and Bestform.

Overall revenues in Berkshire's Other Manufacturing segment, which includes Fruit of the Loom Inc., rose 11.0% to $17.7 billion. The revenue gains were largely led by other businesses in the segment, including Forest River, a maker of leisure vehicles, up 57%; ISCAR Metalworking Companies, up 41%; CTB International, a manufacturer of equipment for the agricultural industry, ahead 20%; and building-products manufacturer Johns Manville, with a 12% gain. Berkshire did not indicate whether apparel sales increased or declined in 2010  although it did note that apparel sales were down 11% in 2009 amid the poor economy.

Pre-tax earnings of its Other Manufacturing businesses in 2010 vaulted 99% to $953 million due to “significant earnings increases at almost all of our manufacturing businesses, including our apparel and building products businesses,” according to the 10K.

Other brands in Berkshire's Other Manufacturing segment include
Acme Building Brands, Benjamin Moore, H.H. Brown Shoe Group, Fechheimer Brothers, Garan, Justin Brands, Larson-Juhl, MiTek, Richline, Scott Fetzer and Shaw Industries.