Electricals group Kesa was once again at the centre of takeover speculation, prompting its share price to reach a two-year high of 166p on Monday.

More than 11 million shares were bought and sold - four times the typical daily number - on gossip that activist investor Knight Vinke was building its stake in the Anglo-French group, which owns the Comet chain in the UK and Darty in France.

Knight Vinke bought into Kesa in June and speaks for 6.6% of the shares at present.

Kesa last updated in September, when it posted first quarter like-for-like growth of 4.3% at group level and the same at Comet.

Comet’s management is in the midst of a rebranding of the business to differentiate it from its competitors by emphasising family friendliness and service in its medium-sized stores.

Kesa’s arch rival and electricals market leader Dixons Retail, owner of Currys and PC World, was scheduled to issue results after Retail Week went to press.