Private equity company Bridgepoint is understood to have made a preliminary approach to Erinaceous. Daily Telegraph

The property services company, which has also received a £350m-£375m buyout approach from 3i, said it had 'received preliminary approaches which may or may not lead to an offer being made for the company'.

Neil Bellis, chief executive, and Lucy Cummings, chief operating officer, control 17% of the company.

Erinaceous shares rose 75.5p to 267.75p, giving the company a market value of £278m.