Mr Paphitis is said to be among a number parties interested in Woolies.
Dragons' Den entrepreneur Theo Paphitis is among several potential bidders for Woolworths, reports say.
Deloitte, Woolworths' administrator, said there had been "substantial interest" in the firm.
Mr Paphitis is said to be working on a plan to rescue some of the chain's most profitable stores and preserve the Woolworths' brand.
Ardeshir Naghshineh, Woolworths' largest shareholder, is also reported to be preparing a bid.
A Deloitte spokesman said there had been talks with a number of parties on Friday and these would resume on Monday.
Around 10 potential bidders have expressed interest in substantial parts of Woolworths' operations and many more parties have registered interest in smaller parts of the company or individual stores, he added.
The Sunday Times and The Sunday Telegraph said Mr Paphitis met the administrators in London on Friday. WHAT IS ADMINISTRATION?
A rescue mechanism for UK companies in severe trouble. It allows them to continue as a going concern, under supervision, effectively to try to trade out of difficulty.
Mr Paphitis has revived the fortunes of several companies, including stationers Ryman and Partners and the La Senza lingerie chain.
However, The Sunday Telegraph said his interest in Woolworths was tentative.
Mr Naghshineh, a property developer who owns London's Centrepoint building, is putting together a deal team and financing package, according to the Independent on Sunday.
Supermarkets Sainsbury's, Asda, Tesco and the Co-op and discount chain Poundland are also thought to want to pick up some of Woolworths' prime stores.
Woolworths' retail and wholesale operations went into administration on Wednesday, putting the jobs of 30,000 staff at risk.
In addition to 815 stores and four distribution centres, Woolworths owns Entertainment UK, which distributes DVDs to supermarket groups and other retailers.
The stores will remain open until after Christmas. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/7757222.stm