Eddie Stobart Logistics has confirmed that former Stobart Group boss Andrew Tinkler has entered the fray to snap up the troubled haulage firm.

Eddie Stobart told investors that it has received a highly preliminary expression of interest from TVFC (3) Limited, a company controlled by Mr Tinkler.

The approach comes a week after shareholder DBAY, which owns a 10 per cent stake in the business, confirmed it was considering an offer for Eddie Stobart.

Mr Tinkler ran part of the business until five years ago, when he sold his share in the company to DBAY.

Eddie Stobart was part of Stobart Group until it was spun off in 2014, before it was separately listed on London's AIM market in April 2017.

The trucking business said there could be no certainty either that an offer will be made nor as to the terms of any offer, if made.

Under UK takeover rules, TVFC must announce its intention to make an offer for Eddie Stobart or walk away, by October 16.

DBAY has also expressed an interest in bidding for the company, which has a depot at Lillyhall, near Workington.

It has until October 7 to table a bid or walk away.

Sources told Sky News Mr Tinkler could look to take part in a capital-raising that would give him a significant stake in the firm, but would not require him to make a formal takeover bid.

Earlier this week, the logistics company warned annual profits would be significantly below expectations after a poor first half of the year.

The distributor said that adverse performance combined with an ambitious budget, as well as delays on a major project, cut into the company's earnings.

On the back of the profit warning, Eddie Stobart said its leadership team has started a wide-ranging review into its operations and financial performance.

Eddie Stobart said it expected revenue for the six months to May 31 to be around £450 million and underlying earnings to be between £10-11 million for period.

The trucking group made the announcement in a delayed update, after the company admitted a £2 million accounting error which saw its shares suspended at 70p last month. It said its shares remain suspended.

Eddie Stobart said its management team is prioritising cash generation and has already taken action to "improve cash collection" in the business.

Eddie Stobart said the fall in earnings is weighing down on its balance sheet, meaning it is relying more on its available debt facilities, which saw debt increase over the half-year.

The warning by the firm is also another frustration for embattled fund manager Neil Woodford, whose fund owns 23 per cent of the business.

A boardroom battle between Mr Tinkler and the wider Stobart Group last year spilled over into the High Court.

Mr Tinkler tried to kick then-chairman Iain Ferguson out of his post and install Cumbria billionaire Philip Day instead.

Mr Tinkler, who Stobart accused of leading an unlawful conspiracy against the company, was narrowly defeated in a shareholders’ vote.

In February, in a separate case, the High Court found Mr Tinkler had acted in breach of his fiduciary duties during his campaign to oust Mr Ferguson.

The judge ruled that Stobart had not established its claim against Tinkler that he had entered into a conspiracy, but said the form's dismissal of Mr Tinkler was lawful.