New York grocer Gristede's has rejoined the race to buy Kings Super Markets from Marks & Spencer.
Gristede's made clear its intention to contact M&S again once the November 30 exclusivity period of rival D'Agostino expired.
Gristede's previously struck an exclusivity agreement with M&S that itself elapsed in July.
Both retailers have had difficulty raising cash in weak US capital markets.
M&S is now understood to be continuing negotiations with both parties, with offers likely to come in at approximately£100 million.