Tesco Kipa, the Turkish unit of the UK retailer, has today (24 February) confirmed its parent is in talks over possible options for the future of the business.

“Tesco plc is in the early stages of negotiations with different companies over different options,” Tesco Kipa, which is listed in Turkey, said in a statement to the Borsa Istanbul.

The announcement followed speculation late last week that Tesco was weighing up its options for its Turkish business.

Sales have been falling and some in the City said Tesco, after exiting Japan and the US, as well as selling control of its Chinese business, could look at a transaction for its Turkish arm.

The Financial Times said on Friday (21 February) Tesco had held talks with private-equity firm BC Partners, majority owner of Turkish chain Migros Ticaret, about combining their assets.

“We don’t comment on rumour or speculation,” a Tesco spokesperson told just-food late on Friday.

In another statement to the Borsa Istanbul this morning, Migros Ticaret, responding to the speculation on Friday, said: “As a private-equity company, BC Partners periodically assesses alternatives for all its existing investments, including Migros, as part of the normal flow of its activities.”