Greetings card retailer Card Factory has appointed KPMG to advise on a sale of the business, which could fetch up to £400m.
Potential bidders for the 480-store retailer are thought to include private equity firms Advent International and TPG. Interested parties are likely to receive full details of the assets up for sale later this week.
The chain is owned by husband and wife team Dean and Janet Hoyle.
The retailer is the latest in a string of businesses put up for sale in recent weeks. Last week Pets at Home was sold for £955m and yesterday New Look said it would float on the stock exchange in March. Matalan is considering a sale, and DFS is also mooting a sale of float.
Retailers are considered attractive targets as they are cash generative and well placed to benefit from any upturn in the consumer economy.
Card Factory had sales of £168m over the year to the end of January 2009 and profits of around £29m, according to documents filed with Companies House. The company employs around 4,500 people.