The Ivy Collection, the Richard Caring-backed operator of the Ivy Market Grill and Ivy Café formats, has appointed Dominic Wilkinson, formerly of the Imbiba-backed Albion & East restaurant and bar concept, as its new finance director, MCA has learnt.

Wilkinson has been finance director for Albion & East and its sister business Wright & Bell since October 2015. He was previously a director of corporate finance at PwC.

He replaces Sean Byrne, formerly director of finance at Tragus for nine years, who has been the finance director of the Ivy Collection since the end of 2015.

The Ivy Collection is to open new sites in Brighton and Winchester this year.

The company will open The Ivy Winchester Brasserie in the town’s High Street in the next couple of months and The Ivy in the Lanes in Brighton’s Shop Street later in the year.

The group took its estate of Brasseries/Grills and Cafes to 20 sites at the end of last year, with the opening of The Ivy Montpelier Brasserie in Cheltenham, and The Ivy St Helen’s Square in York.

It will open its first site of 2018, The Ivy Castle View, in Guildford.

The concept, which has already secured sites in Dublin and Leeds for this year, will open the Ivy Cambridge Brasserie at 16 Trinity Street in Cambridge city centre this spring.

The concept will also open a site in Leeds’ Victoria Quarter scheme, joining the development’s existing dining offer, which includes CAU, le Pain Quotidien and two D&D London rooftop restaurants Issho and East 59th. It is also set to open in The Ivy Temple Row in Birmingham this year.

At the same time, The Ivy have been given the green light to open in Dublin, for what will become The Ivy Dawson Street.

It will be the first of the Ivy Collection’s restaurants to be located outside of the UK. The company has signed a 20-year lease for No 1 Molesworth Street, which is currently under construction.

The group also has openings lined up in openings lined up in Exeter and Canary Wharf. It also believed to be in talks on sites in Cardiff and Glasgow.