Sofa giant DFS is poised to be sold for more than £500m before the end of next week.

Private equity houses Cinven, Permira and Advent International are in the race to acquire the retailer, according to The Independent.

Final bids for the 78-store chain, owned by founder Lord Kirkham, are due as early as March 17.

A source told the newspaper that DFS has a “formula that has stood the test of time and has a proven track record of delivering profitability”.

In January Retail Week revealed that in the year to July, DFS’s EBITDA soared 42.1% to £86.7m.

Debenhams outgoing chairman John Lovering is thought to be advising Permira on its bid while Debenhams chief executive Rob Templeman has been linked to Cinven.