Ego Restaurants is to merge with pizza business Rocket Restaurants under a new umbrella company called 3Sixty Restaurants.
The merger of the two companies comes months after Luke Johnson acquired a majority stake in Ego Restaurants, which is led by James Horler.
3Sixty Restaurants will comprise eight Ego Restaurants in the Midlands and the North, and three Rocket restaurants in central London. Group annual sales for the new business will be in excess of £12m.
Johnson will chair the company, with Horler as chief executive. The management teams of both businesses remain with the company.
Commenting on the merger, Luke Johnson, who is a former chairman of PizzaExpress, said: "Putting together two businesses makes commercial sense for all shareholders and is the start of us creating a much bigger business with a number of brands that operate in different trading environments. It is also a delight to be back in the pizza market with a brand like Rocket that does it extremely well and has a very loyal customer base."
Horler added: "This is a significant move for both businesses and I am very much looking forward to working with the management teams of both Ego and Rocket to create an exciting business that can deliver some considerable returns over the forthcoming years."
By Neil Gerrard
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