Sir Tom Hunter, the retail entrepreneur, has entered into exclusive talks with Silverfleet Capital to sell the Office shoe shop chain for about £150m, according to people familiar with the deal.
The discussions between the former buy-out arm of Prudential and Sir Tom’s West Coast Capital vehicle come after other possible suitors, including Blackstone, dropped out of the auction for the debt-free chain.
West Coast bought Office, which was founded almost decades ago, from a family business in 2003 for about £16m.
The chain has since expanded from 21 shops, mainly in London, to a national presence of 73 outlets and 41 concessions.
Sir Tom put the chain, which reported pre-tax profit of £15.6m in the year to January, up for sale in July when he appointed Hawkpoint, the boutique investment bank, and Financo, from the US, to find a buyer.
Both Silverfleet, whose other investments include the TJ Hughes discount stores, and West Coast declined to comment.