Charterhouse Capital Partners, the former backer of Barracuda Pub Company, is one of three private equity groups left in the running to acquire the UK arm of TGI Friday’s, M&C Report has learnt.

It is understood that former Wagamama backer Lion Capital and Electra Partners, which recently acquired the Original Bowling Company, are also left in the process to acquire the Karen Forrester-led business, with third round bids due in around 10 days.

It is thought that all three would look to back the existing management team led by Forrester, which has overseen a successful turnaround of the 65-strong brand that is believed to be valued at £230m-£250m.

Sentinel Capital and TriArtisan Partners, which acquired TGI Friday’s in May for c$800m (£470m) appointed Rothschild to oversee the sale of its UK estate earlier this summer.

It is thought that a successful bidder would look to back the further role of the brand in the UK, but also explore opportunities to bolt on further businesses and leverage the culture and operational framework that Forrester has successful implemented at TGI’s.

The business, which reported EBITDA of £19.9m in 2013, saw turnover increase to £166.8m in the 53 weeks to 30 December 2013, from £147.7m the year before. Like-for-like sales climbed 3.6%.

Earlier this year, the company launched a new “Fast Track” format at Manchester Piccadilly station, its first site at a transport hub.

Part of its aim to reach 120 UK locations by 2020, the company said the combined the “fresh and flavourful food for which Friday’s is famous within a restaurant environment tailored to the needs of the busy traveller”, with meals to be served within 10 minutes of order.

Of this 120-site target, the company believes there is opportunity to operate c80 sites under its core format. It will open its next site at Milton Keynes Stadium.