Couillard told reporters in Quebec City that Guy Laliberte is one of Quebec's great entrepreneurs and the Cirque is a huge source of pride for the province.
The Globe and Mail reported that bidders have been given until next week to submit offers to purchase Laliberte's controlling stake in the Cirque.
The newspaper cited sources as saying Laliberte has agreed to sell all but 10 per cent of his share.
Couillard says it's not only important that the international headquarters and its almost 1,500 workers stay in Montreal, but that Cirque activities should also remain in the city.
In the national assembly today, Jacques Daoust, the minister of economy and innovation, said a Quebec group has been involved in the process, but he would not go into detail, saying it was confidential.
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