The Range’s founder Chris Dawson is in talks with investment banks about a £2bn London flotation of the value retailer he founded 30 years ago.

Dawson is targeting a listing during the second half of this year, according to Sky News, which added that “several” banks were expected to be hired before spring.

Dawson, who fired up speculation of a float when he brought in ex-House of Fraser chief executive Nigel Oddy to replace him as boss last year, has built his 150-store empire from scratch and has expressed ambitions to have around 600 stores.

Last year, The Range delivered a jump in pre-tax profits as it continued on its successful streak of sales growth.

The value home retailer’s pre-tax profits grew 18% to £67.5m in the 12 months to January 29, 2017.

It generated £761.3m in sales during the period – up 13% year on year – as it grew its store portfolio.