Castanea Partners Announces Investment in Ippolita

    Invests in Rapidly Growing Premier Designer Jewelry Brand

    NEWTON, MASS., November 19 /CNW/ - Castanea Partners announced today that
it has invested in Ippolita, a designer of luxury jewelry and accessories.

    Founded in 1999, Ippolita is a fast growing designer and marketer of
luxury fashion jewelry and related products under the Ippolita brand.
Beginning with their iconic handcrafted bangles, Ippolita successfully created
a unique, fashion forward jewelry aesthetic appealing to discerning
contemporary and classic customers. The company sells its products at leading
premium retailers including Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, Bergdorf
Goodman, Harrods, and Holt Renfrew, as well as through a number of specialty
boutiques and its own website ( Ippolita is headquartered in
New York, NY.

    Castanea will support the company as it continues to strengthen the
distinctive Ippolita brand and expand its distribution footprint. Founder and
Creative Director, Ippolita, and CEO, Lauren Sharfman, will continue in their
current roles.

    "Castanea's vast operating experience in luxury consumer brands makes
them an ideal strategic partner," said Lauren Sharfman.

    Ippolita added, "The company is at an important inflection point. Our
brand resonates with a growing number of fashion-forward women, and Castanea
will help us build the infrastructure to meet that demand, support our
wholesale customers, and realize exciting growth opportunities."

    "We are very pleased with the opportunity to invest in such a high
profile and successful brand," said Brian Knez, co-managing partner of
Castanea. "Ippolita and Lauren have achieved a level of success that is truly
impressive and we are excited to partner with them as the Company continues to

    About Castanea Partners

    Castanea Partners is a private equity firm that invests in small and
middle market companies in publishing, education, training, consumer brands,
specialty retail, and marketing services. The firm has extensive operating and
private equity investment experience in these sectors and, working closely
with management, seeks to optimize business performance and realize attractive

    Castanea participates in leveraged buyouts, growth and acquisition equity
investments, and operationally challenging situations. Castanea is currently
investing from its third fund, a $575 million fund that targets companies with
enterprise values up to $150 million.

    More information on Castanea Partners is available at

    All company, brand, or product names contained in this document may be
trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.

For further information:

For further information: Castanea Marion Schouten, 617-630-2420

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