• Schroders sells it 9.27% stake for 33p a share 
  • It was second-biggest shareholder and largest institutional investor
  • Retailer is under pressure from activist investors over corporate governance

French Connection’s second-biggest shareholder, Schroders, has offloaded its entire stake in the troubled fashion retailer.

Schroders, a long-standing backer of the chain, was its biggest institutional investor with a 9.27% stake.

It sold its shares at 33p each yesterday to a mystery buyer, according to filings.

The sale sparked a spike in French Connection’s share price, which rose 18.6%.

The retailer has been rocked in recent weeks by pressure from activist investors over the way the loss-making company is being run. 

The investors are calling for founder and boss Stephen Marks to find a buyer or shake up its corporate governance.