Apparel firm Warnaco said it is open to concepts to grow shareholder value after activist hedge fund company Barington Group urged it consider a sale.

Barington - which said it now has a 5.6% stake in Warnaco - wants to start talks over possible options for the business, which has suffered plummeting stock this year.

In a Schedule 13D filing with the SEC, Barington said it thought Warnaco was undervalued.

As well as a potential sale, options for the company include the sale of certain assets, reducing options grants and eradicating excess costs and missed targets.

Warnaco's president and CEO Joseph Gromek has agreed that the company will meet with Barington to discuss its ideas.

The company, which boasts brands such as Speedo, Calvin Klein and Nautica, recently reported a 46% slump in second-quarter profit.

It was reported in June that apparel maker Phillips-Van Heusen was considering making a bid for Warnaco.