Israel-based lingerie, sleepwear and sock manufacturer Delta Galil Industries has signed a global licensing deal with Columbia Sportswear for the development, manufacture and distribution of performance-based underwear collections. 

The deal, which runs to 2018, represents a significant expansion into the performance underwear category by Columbia Sportswear and will see Delta Galil produce a range of products for the group, including a full collection of women's sports bras and underwear, and men's underwear. 

Performance underwear products are engineered with specialised features, such as moisture management and anti-microbial properties, to meet the needs of consumers with active lifestyles.

Isaac Dabah, CEO of Delta Galil, said the agreement represents an important growth opportunity for the business, with activewear remaining a "strong contributor" to the group's overall sales. 

The first range will launch at the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market Expo in Salt Lake City, Utah, from 7-10 January, with early previews beginning mid-December through the end of the year. 

Matt Merriman, director of licensing at Columbia Sportswear, said of the deal: "We are excited to be collaborating with Delta Galil on the development of our performance underwear business. Their design expertise, ability to meet our high quality and performance standards, and strong global reach will be instrumental in expanding our brand into this important new category."