US sports apparel and accessories retailer NIKE has agreed to sell its Cole Haan affiliate brand for $570m to UK-based private equity firm, Apax Partners.

The deal enables the expansion of Cole Haan brand nationally and internationally and is part of the company’s strategy to focus on the driving growth of the NIKE, Jordan, Converse and Hurley brands.

The transaction is expected to be complete in early 2013.

NIKE president & CEO Mark Parker said, "The decision to divest of Cole Haan allows us to sharpen our focus on opportunities with the highest potential for strong returns, and to make sure the brands within the NIKE, Inc. portfolio are the most complementary to the NIKE Brand,"

Apax’s Retail & Consumer team partner Alex Pellegrini said, "Cole Haan is an iconic brand with broad consumer appeal and we believe the brand has even greater opportunities in the future. We look forward to investing in the Company to achieve this growth."

Based near Beaverton, Oregon, Nike is a designer, marketer and distributor of authentic athletic footwear, apparel, equipment and accessories for a wide variety of sports and fitness activities.

The company’s wholly-owned Nike subsidiaries include Converse, which designs, markets and distributes athletic footwear, apparel and accessories and Hurley International, which designs, markets and distributes action sports and youth lifestyle footwear, apparel and accessories.