Sainsbury’s market value plummeted by more than £2 billion yesterday following the collapse of the Delta Two bid for the supermarket.

Shares tumbled yesterday to 440p, a drop of 21 per cent, after the Qatari-backed investment vehicle decided not to pay the extra£500 million needed to secure the deal. Today, shares continued to fall slightly to 434.5p in early-morning trading.

Delta Two had been given until Thursday afternoon to make a firm bid for Sainsbury's, after it first revealed details of its proposed£10.6 billion offer in July.

Yesterday, Delta Two blamed the global credit crunch for it walking away from the deal.