French retailer Fnac has tabled a counterbid for Darty as the battle for the London-listed electricals retailer heats up.

Fnac said today that it will offer 145p per Darty share, which values Darty’s share capital at £779m.

The bid comes less than a day after Steinhoff-owned furniture retailer Conforama said it had acquired 19.5% of Darty’s share capital at 138p per share and will offer that amount to Darty’s remaining shareholders.

Darty’s board earlier this month “unanimously” recommended a previous offer from Conforama. The South African-owned group crashed the party for Darty after ending its interest in acquiring Argos.

Fnac said today that if it acquired Darty it would offer “compelling financial benefits to the combined group, including total annual pre-tax synergies of at least €130m per annum”.

Darty boss Regis Schultz told Retail Week last month that he welcomed the takeover interest because the French electricals market needed to be consolidated.

However, he refused to be drawn on whether Conforama or Fnac were his preferred bidders.