Sportswear firm Everlast Worldwide Inc has signed its biggest license deal  to date with ladies' apparel supplier Jacques Moret Inc.

The agreement, which will come into effect from 1 January 2005, grants New York City based Moret a license for Everlast women's apparel in the United States.

According to the terms of the five-year contract, Moret will pay around $12.5 million worth of minimum guarantees to Everlast.

At the end of this term, Moret has the option to sign a 99 year license for women's apparel rights for approximately $30 million.

In addition, Moret will pay for all women's apparel inventory purchased by Everlast, future advertisements previously placed by the company and other transitional costs associated with the women's business.

Everlast's chairman, chief executive officer and president, George Horowitz, said that the women's line will benefit from "Moret's abilities for sourcing due to economies of scale" and "expanded distribution opportunities that are available to large apparel companies such as Moret."

Horowitz said that distribution levels of the line would stay the same, and that Moret had pledged to employ key sales, merchandising, and operating personnel formerly belonging to Everlast's ladies' apparel sector.

Moret was awarded Everlast's Canadian women's apparel license earlier this year.