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April 18 2014

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kuhne’s new backer

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What do Proenza Schouler and Kai Kuhne have in common? On the surface, not much: The all-American design duo are most often photographed in the company of a PYT, while German expat Kühne’s constant companion is a dappled white pit bull named Powder. But they have both been touched by the same “angel”: Markus Hoefels, a private venture capitalist in Berlin and CEO of Icon Fashion Group. Hoefels was an investor in Proenza Schouler and—you’re hearing it here first—has just announced his backing of Kühne. “With this cooperation we will build a very important bridge between Berlin and New York,” he says. Hoefels’ initial investment helped the Proenza boys get off and running (in 2007 they bought back their stake from Hoefels and sold a 45 percent interest in their company to Valentino Fashion Group). Here’s hoping it will have the same effect on Kühne, who is having something of a rebirth himself since his split with AsFour. He changed the name of his solo effort from Myself to Kai Kühne last season and was invited to show at Berlin fashion week this past July

Photo: Courtesy of Kai Kühne

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