Hotel Chocolat is in talks with private equity groups about a possible stake sale that values the confectioner at more than £100m.

The retailer said it has hired PwC to evaluate “unsolicited approaches” following a story in the Mail on Sunday at the weekend.

Hotel Chocolat said: “Current discussions may lead to the investment of a minority stake in the business, to assist with the next stage of growth.”

Hotel Chocolat, which is owned by founders Angus Thirlwell and Peter Harris, has 66 UK stores and a fledgling business in Denmark, the Netherlands and the US.

Last year, the retailer’s pre-tax profits surged 84% to £5.4m for the 12 months to June 30, with sales up 6% to £63.8m.