The Kooples Emily bag

PARIS — Swiss retail group Maus Frères has entered into exclusive negotiations to purchase Paris-based contemporary label The Kooples, with a deal expected before the end of the first half.

The brand would join Maus Frères International Brands division, which includes Lacoste, Gant and Aigle.

Founded in 2008 by brothers Alexandre, Laurent and Raphaël Elicha, The Kooples registered revenues of 227 million euros last year and is present in 32 markets through its own network of 334 stores, mainly in Europe and the U.S.

“The Kooples would be a perfect add on to our brand portfolio, with its fashionable ‘urban/rock’ positioning within the affordable luxury universe,” stated Maus Frères chairman Didier Maus. “We are attracted by its positioning, which has enabled the brand to develop equally strong offers for women and men and therefore represents a unique potential. This acquisition would strengthen Maus Frères’ position as a major player in the premium brand market.”

Private equity fund LBO France took a 20 percent stake in The Kooples in 2011, and remains among its shareholders.