The owner and chief executive of fashion chain French Connection Group Plc was on Sunday reported to have held talks with private-equity houses over the possible sales of his stake.

The Sunday Times said Stephen Marks is believed to have become disillusioned with the stock market after the retailer remained poorly rated despite a strong performance in the past few years.

The paper said Marks has a stake of around 50 per cent in the company but said the informal talks ended a few weeks ago when its share price rose.

French Connection has yet to comment on the report.