China-based Xtep International Holdings announced plans to acquire E-Land Footwear USA Holdings, the parent of K-Swiss for $260 million.
Based in Quanzhou city, Xtep will buy a 100 percent stake in E-Land Footwear from South Korea-based E-Land World. The new deal is expected to be completed by the end of July.
The move will see Xtep take the next steps in broadening its product range to sell to new market segments and different subcultures.
“The board believes that the transaction is an attractive opportunity to invest in a portfolio of global renowned sportswear and lifestyle brands targeting the high-end market segment,” Xtep Chairman Ding Shui Po said in the statement.
Xtep’s Chief Financial Officer Ricky Yeung told local media at a press event that the Chinese company’s products will be sold separately from K-Swiss and its sister shoe brands such as Supra Palladium, KR3W and PLDM.
Namesake Xtep exports will home in on emerging markets such as Vietnam, India and Thailand, with plans to open 15 to 20 new outlets this year.
While Xtep has no prior experience selling products outside China, “everything has to have a first step,” said Yeung. “Xtep will always target the mass market.”
Founded in 1990, Xtstep was created as producer of running shoes, before expanding into performance apparels and lifestyle clothing.
More recently in March, the Hong Kong-listed company said it signed a deal with U.S. outdoor and sportswear firm Wolverine Worldwide to sell Merrell hiking gear and Saucony running shoes in mainland China.
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Chinese sportswear companies continue to beef up their global portfolio, poaching firms and brands from Europe and the US. Just last month, Anta, located Jinjiang city, completed the takeover of 98 per cent of Amer Sports.
The Finnish company owns a range of sports brands from Wilson tennis rackets to Salomon snowboards and Atomic skis.