Martin Williams, the outgoing managing director of Gaucho, is to launch his own restaurant venture called ‘M'.
Williams, who is set to leave Gaucho this month after nine years with the company, will open the first ‘M' restaurant in an as-yet-undisclosed location in central London before the end of this year.
Two further restaurants are then set to follow in the next 18 months.
Each ‘M' restaurant will house three individual concepts: M-Raw, M-Bar, and M-Grill. M-Raw promises to serve low fat and low carbohydrate ceviche in a mid-market setting designed to suit quick personal and corporate lunches by day, and serve as a "high octane hotspot" by night. Meanwhile, M-Grill will specialise in steak and wine with six cuts of beef from six areas of the globe - America, Argentina, Japan, South Africa, France and Australia. And M-Bar, which will sit in close proximity to, or within Raw, will offer a range of cocktails and feature live music.
Speaking about the new venture, Williams said: "It has been an amazing nine years at Gaucho and I have loved being inspired and challenged each day by my team and our guests to continuously push the brand to new levels of quality across all that we do.
"Leading Gaucho as managing director has been a fantastic journey but I have decided that the time is right to move on to my next and biggest challenge in my career to date; starting up my own restaurant group.
"‘M' will house three concepts under one roof, forming one brand but with strong, individual identities.
Mike Reid, former executive chef of Gaucho and CAU will devise and launch the M food menus across all three brands, and is expected to remain as consultant executive chef after opening the restaurant.
Lance Perkins, currently the director of beverage and bars at the London Edition hotel, will join the M team to help create the beverage offer.
During Williams's time at Gaucho, the company grew from six to 15 sites in London, Manchester, Leeds and Ducai.
He was also heavily involved in the company's rebranding from Gaucho Grill to Gaucho, and created the Gaucho Cup - an annual golf tournament for Gaucho regulars at Stoke Park. The company, which is backed by Intermediate Capital Group, has reported net sales of £55m a year and £10m company EBITDA.
The company has also won numerous awards, including a Catey for ‘Best Restaurateur - Group' in 2012.