HAS Versace found a buyer? The Italian fashion house, which is the subject of much speculation ahead of Allegra's 18th birthday next Wednesday, has apparently been contacted by the Istithmar fund about buying a minority stake. Versace admitted earlier this year that it was looking for a financial partner and, with Gianni's niece due to inherit 50 per cent of the business next week, the fashion world has been on tenterhooks to see what will happen next. It seems that this Dubai, United Arab Emirates-based investor group, which has a bank balance in the region of $2 billion, has big plans, however. "A brand like Versace is the dream of any sheik," Matteo Corsini, the Italian partner of Istithmar, told Women's Wear Daily. "I think Versace is the best brand in Italy. New money is a good combination with the Versace brand." While CVC Partners, Cerebus and Apax Partners, all of which were expected to show an interest in the house, have failed to come up with any offers, Versace itself is refusing to comment on any rumours. "The company has received great interest from many parties," it said. "All inquiries have been forwarded to our advisers Credit Suisse First Boston and Lazard." Do you think Versace should sell up or should Allegra take over from her mother in a bid to save the label?