Net-a-Porter has received a bid approach from shareholder Swiss luxury group Richemont, which would value the luxury etailer at about £350m.
Richemont, which controls a 28% stake in the business, is believed to be in discussions to buy out the shares in the business that it does not already own.
The etailer’s founder Natalie Massenet and Venezuelan investor Baywinds also hold stakes in the business and it is unclear what, if any, stake they would retain in the company post any deal. Massenet, who set up the business in 1999, is expected to sell at least part of her 18.2% stake.
In the six-months to August 1 Net-a-Porter’s pre-tax profits grew 56% to £7.1m with sales up 40% to £53.2m.
In November the business denied speculation that it was preparing for a float. Massenet said at the time that a public listing “has always been there as a potential exit for shareholders but it is not something we are focusing on”.
She added: “We don’t need to raise money, we run off our own steam. Our shareholders are very happy. They are there for the long run.”
Net-a-Porter also runs discount luxury fashion etail site the Outnet.com and the back office for Jimmy Choo’s online operations.
A spokesman for Net-a-Porter said: “We never comment on speculation”. Richemont, which owns luxury brands such as menswear brand Alfred Dunhill and designer womenswear labels Chloe and Shanghai Tang, declined to comment.