A new name has been thrown into the hat in a bid to invest in buzzy New York label, Proenza Schouler. It has been reported that Castanea Partners are the new contenders in the race that has until recently been lead by luxury giant group LVMH.

Last summer, the French company started on-again off-again negotiations to add Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez, the duo behind the brand, to its growing stable of young designers. However after those talks tailed off once again, Castenea Partners stepped in with a proposal. 

Castanea is a private equity firm that typically invests between $15 million and $75 million of equity in consumer brands and marketing services companies. Its current portfolio includes Drybar, Donald J. Pliner, Thyme and Ippolita, with a growing portfolio that is added to annually. 

The design duo, who named their label after each of their mother's maiden names, admitted that they were looking for more investment to satisfy their ambition of expanding into menswear and fragrances. As for being only minority owners, they said the most important thing was to retain creative control and know their investors. "I think most of [our investors] realised that if they let us do what we do, they're going to have a return," Hernandez said.  "The wrong thing for them to do would be to clip our wings. We haven't let anyone down yet."

Neither side has indicated whether the talks are on the road to signed deal yet, both have declined to comment. Stay tuned to Buro 24/7 Middle East for the latest developments on this story.