The Associated Press July 23, 2010, 9:55AM ET

Polo Ralph Lauren buys back S. Korean operations

Polo Ralph Lauren Corp. said Friday it agreed to buy back wholesale and retail distribution from its South Korean licensee, Doosan Corp., for $47 million.

Polo Ralph Lauren, which makes Polo, Ralph Lauren and Club Monaco brand clothing, will pay Doosan Corp. $25 million in cash for some assets and $22 million for inventory and some other assets to be determined when the deal closes Dec. 31.

CEO Ralph Lauren said in a statement that international expansion was a high priority for the company and added South Korea is one of its largest markets.

The move will let the company operate more efficiently and consistently across Asia, said Chief Operating Officer Roger Farah.

Doosan Corp., which worked with Polo Ralph Lauren for 12 years, currently distributes Polo Ralph Lauren product through about 175 shop-in-shops and five freestanding locations throughout South Korea.

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