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Janet Gurwitch Joins Castanea Partners

Expert in Luxury Personal Care and Branded Consumer Products to Focus on New Opportunities

Newton, MA – Dec 5, 2011 – Castanea Partners announced today that Janet Gurwitch has joined the firm as Operating Partner. Janet has over fifteen years of executive experience in the personal care, luxury, and branded consumer products sectors.

Prior to joining Castanea, Janet was the founder and CEO of Laura Mercier Cosmetics, a leading, global beauty brand. Under Janet’s leadership, Laura Mercier became one of the top 5 prestige cosmetics brands in the world.

Prior to founding Laura Mercier, Janet was Executive Vice President of Merchandizing at Neiman Marcus Stores, where she set the strategy for and oversaw the entire women’s complex including beauty, ready-to-wear, and accessories. Janet began her career at Foley’s Department Store where she was Senior Vice President of Merchandizing.

Brian Knez, Managing Partner of Castanea, said, “As an operating oriented private investment firm, adding Janet to our team presents an extraordinary opportunity. She will add to our unique level and depth of operating expertise, particularly in personal care. With her extensive knowledge, network, and experience, Janet will enhance our ability to add value in supporting our portfolio companies, and in identifying new investment opportunities.”

Janet serves as director on the boards of Urban Decay Cosmetics and La-Z-Boy, Inc., and on the advisory board of Rice University Business School. Additionally, she lectures at the business schools of University of Texas, University of Houston, Rice University, and University of Alabama.

About Castanea

Castanea Partners is a private equity firm founded by operating executives and private equity veterans. We invest between $15M to $75M of equity in companies within specifically targeted industry sectors where we have proven investment and operating expertise. Castanea is principally focused on investing in dynamic consumer brands and marketing services companies that enable such brands to connect with their customers. The firm also seeks to invest in select business-to-business providers of must-have information.

Castanea is currently investing from its third fund, a $500 million fund that targets companies with enterprise values up to $250 million.

For more information, visit Castanea Partners or contact Marion Schouten at 617.630.2420 or mschouten@castaneapartners.com.

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