Home Retail Group's share price was soaring this morning, after another suitor made a higher offer for Argos' parent company.
On Friday, Christo Weise-backed Steinhoff International made a higher cash offer of 175p-per-share - valuing the British business at £1.4bn.
Home Retail Group's share price was up more than 12 per cent in early trading - while Sainsbury, which has been the sole contender for the business, saw its share price fall more than two per cent.
The surprise bid gives Sainsbury’s little time to decide its next move. The retailer could therefore ask for today's 5pm deadline to be pushed back, aligning it with Steinhoff’s 18 March deadline.
There has already been some criticism of Sainsbury's for offering what some have argued is an inflated figrue, after having had two bids rejected outright.
However chief executive Mike Coupe has pledged that the supermarket will not overpay for the company.