Search begins for new chief
Kesa is understood to be hunting for a new chief executive after Jean-Noël Labroue informed the board he wants to step down.

Europe's third-largest electricals retailer, which operates the Comet chain in the UK, has hired headhunter Egon Zehnder to conduct the hunt, which has been going on for several weeks.

Labroue is thought to have told the board he will stay on to ensure a smooth handover, which makes it likely he will not quit the company until next year

There is speculation that Labroue's successor could include WHSmith chief executive Kate Swann or Argos managing director Sarah Weller.

Last week, Kesa posted a sales rise of 7.4 per cent, with like-for-likes up 4.3 per cent in the three months to April 30, after strong sales in February and March. However, sales were weaker in April and it remains cautious about trading in the second quarter.