French outdoor clothing retailer Lafuma has confirmed that South Korean apparel conglomerate E-Land is in talks to buy the firm.

In a statement to the French securities market, Euronext Paris, the company said E-Land has shown an interest and discussions are at a very early stage, with no guarantee regarding the outcome.

According to a report in La Lettre de L'Expansion, E-Land is offering EUR35 per share, which values the company at EUR122m (US$159m). The group's share price has soared since the report, reaching EUR25.65 per share today (18 September) compared with EUR17 on Friday.

The E-Land group is one of the biggest fashion and retail businesses in South Korea, with a turnover of more than $7.5bn.

The group has a portfolio of 60 national brands and 40 private brands including Ellesse, New Balance, Berghaus, Teenie Weenie and Marie Claire. It also owns the Peter Scott knitwear business in Hawick and the Northhamptonshire-based Gloverall duffle coat maker, and last year bought weaving and tartan specialist Lochcarron of Scotland.

The group also runs overseas production bases in Sri Lanka and Vietnam where it employs around 4,000 workers making garments for the group as well as supplying other brands such as Esprit.