James Baer, managing director of Amber Taverns has told M&C Report the company is keen to push further south and is eyeing properties in Northampton and Leicester.

Baer also said the group would consider group acquisitions but ruled out a move for Bravo Inns.

Baer said: “We are opening a pub in Rugby, which will be our southern-most pub ,in June. We have spent some time looking at Northampton and Leicester recently. We are definitely prepared to move south but it has to be the right opportunity.”

He added: “But there are still plenty of areas in the north where we are not represented. We are not in Leeds or Sheffield for example.”

On group acquisitions he said: “It will always be done on a case by case basis. There are new entrants to the sector who are prepared to pay bigger multiples than us. We believe we have the capability and the backing to make a group acquisition but we are not going to overpay and we are happy to carry on buying single pubs or a couple at a time. We believe we can get better returns that way, even if it isn’t as quick.”

The company recently bought the Saracen’s Head in Dudley and plans to invest £600,000 in the site.