Allied Carpets has been acquired for an undisclosed sum by an offshore investment fund backed by US investors.

The deal to buy the UK’s second-largest carpet retailer will save thousands of jobs.

Sigma Capital is thought to have identified long-term value in the retailer, although it is likely to want to close some of Allied’s 218 stores, according to The Independent.

The deal comes ahead of the critical second-quarter rent day, when the company faced an£8m rental bill.

Restructuring specialists Hilco and private equity firm Merchant Equity Partners, the former owner of MFI, expressed interest in the retailer when it was put up for sale by its former owner Tapis Saint-Maclou before Christmas.

Allied Carpet made an operating loss of£6.8m on sales of£206.9m in 2007.