Ego currently operates five restaurants across the North West with a sixth due to open in the Midlands in late April.
Horler, who was backed by LDC (Lloyds TSB Development Capital), has raised £9.1m for the acquisition and roll-out of another 36 of the Mediterranean styled restaurants.
The roll out will initially focus on the North and the Midlands in places such as Nottingham and Leeds, but will go nationwide later.
The deal sees Ego founders Jason Ellison and Jonathan Poole leave the company they founded in 1997, with Horler associates John Barnes and Ian Edwards joining the business as non-executive directors.
Ego's existing management team of five hold a minority stake in the new business as does LDC.
James Horler, executive chairman of Ego, said: "Many suburban dining areas in the Midlands and North West are under-provided for in terms of quality casual dining and Ego is well placed to make in roads into this area."
By Gemma Sharkey
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