Private equity group Permira is understood to be one of the early frontrunners in the E1bn sale of the Jurys Inn hotel group. The Times

The auction for the 14 hotels in Britain and six in Ireland was expected to attract Irish investors such as Derek Quinlan, who owns Claridges, and Paddy Kelly, who controls Prem Group.

Permira is thought to want to run Jurys Inn alongside its Principal Hotels operation. It faces competition from rival bidder Doughty Hanson.