High street electronics retailer Maplin has been put up for sale with a price tag of up to £200 million.
Its owner Montagu Private Equity is understood to have hired accountants PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) to handle the sale, which comes after a number of potential bidders have approached the buyout firm to snap up the 214-strong chain.
It is thought the business could fetch between £100 million and £200 million.
The decision to put it on the sale block sees Montagu buck the wider trend for retailers to list on the stock market amid flotation fever in the sector.
Convenience store McColl's and online domestic appliances group AO have made their stock market debuts recently, while Pets at Home and discount retailer Poundland have announced plans for share offers next month.
Montagu bought Maplin in September 2004 from previous buyout firm Graphite Capital and management.
It is the UK's biggest specialist consumer electronics retailer, with high street and out-of-town stores, a mail order catalogue and online presence.
The group launched a new website with an expanded product range last year under plans to boost its online offering.
Montagu declined to comment.