) --

Playboy Enterprises


shares are up 41.6% to $5.58 today after the company announced that

Hugh Hefner has formally proposed to acquire

all outstanding shares for a purchase price of $5.50 a share.

Hefner, who founded Playboy Enterprises in 1957, currently owns 69.5% of the company's Class A stock and 27.7% of Class B stock.

According to the proposal, Hefner would form a partnership with Rizvi Traverse Management to complete the acquisition. The company also said that Hefner's letter indicated that he has no interest in a sale or merger of the company.

Other offers for Playboy are being presented as well. According to a

The Wall Street Journal

TheStreet Recommends

report on Monday,

FriendFinder Networks

, the company that owns Penthouse magazine, plans to make an offer.

PEI went public in 1971, but circulation and revenue have been down in recent years. Hefner's proposed deal values the company at $185 million.

-- Reported by Theresa McCabe in Boston.

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