United Biscuits, the parent company of brands including McVitie’s, Jaffa Cakes and Hula Hoops, could be preparing to float on the stock market.

Reports in the weekend press said that Cinven, PAI and Mid Ocean Partners, the three private equity firms which own a 75% stake in the company, want to float the company in the first quarter of 2006.

Kraft Foods owns the remaining 25% stake in the group.