The Week, one of Britain's biggest-selling news and current affairs magazines, has been put up for sale in a move that is likely to attract interest from major newspaper publishers.
Sky News has learnt that Dennis Publishing, the magazines and online media group owned by Exponent Private Equity, has hired investment bankers to gauge interest in The Week from prospective buyers.
City sources said this weekend that Liontree Advisors had been appointed by Dennis Publishing to oversee an auction.
The move to sell the title follows a period of falling print circulation for The Week, with that trend, however, being offset by surging sales of The Week Junior, its current affairs title for younger readers.
It is understood that the sale process only relates to Dennis Publishing's flagship magazine and does not include any of the other brands in its portfolio, which include AutoExpress, Fortean Times, Minecraft World, MoneyWeek and Viz.
The proposed sale comes three years after Exponent saw off competition from Daily Mail & General Trust (DMGT to acquire Dennis.
It was unclear this weekend whether DMGT would be among the suitors for The Week, although analysts said big publishing groups were likely to consider making offers for the title.
Dennis was put up for sale in 2018 by the executors of founder Felix Dennis's estate, with the proceeds subsequently distributed to The Heart of England Forest Charity, which was also set up by the tree-loving tycoon.
Both Dennis and publishing rivals have provided evidence of the toll being exerted on print media groups amid growing pressure on advertising revenues, with readers increasingly shifting online.
Exponent did not respond to a request for comment on Sunday.