Guess Inc. said Monday that it has signed a European licensing deal and has shaken up the roles of brothers Maurice and Paul Marciano as part of a global expansion plan.


The Los Angeles-based apparel maker and retailer said that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Guess Europe B.V., acquired 75 percent of the equity interest of Focus Europe S.r.l., a deal that included the leases and assets of four Guess by Marciano retail stores in Italy.


Focus has served as the licensee, manufacturer and distributor of the Guess by Marciano line for women and men in Europe, the Middle East and Asia for the past 10 years. Financial terms of the deal, which closed Dec. 31, were not disclosed but the company did say an option to purchase the remaining 25 percent of the company by 2011 is available.


The company also shook up the roles of the two brothers, Maurice and Paul Marciano, who run the company.


Maurice, who serves as co-chief executive and co-chairman of the board, has been moved to chairman of the board while his brother, Paul, who also served co-chief and co-chairman, has been appointed chief executive and vice-chairman of the board. The company said that both moves were part of a global expansion plan and will take effect immediately.


The brothers have served as co-chairmen and co-chief executives since 1999.


Shares in Guess were down 13 cents to $65.70 in midday trading following huge gains last week due to stellar December sales numbers.

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