Barworks, the fast expanding bars and diners operator, has opened its 13th site in the capital after taking on the Exmouth Arms in London’s Clerkenwell. It also announced plans to open a further two venues in the capital in the first half of 2012. The company, which is run by Anders Akerlund, Patrick Franzen and Mark Francis-Baum, has taken a free-of-tie lease from Enterprise Inns on the Exmouth Arms, which is located next to Exmouth Market. The group is also currently in negotiations regarding a site in Covent Garden for its American-style diner brand, The Diner, which it hopes to open by March next year. It also hopes to add another site under the brand in the capital by next summer. The privately-owned group currently operates five sites under the brand, in Camden, Kensal Rise, Islington, Shoreditch and Soho. The company has also secured a former pub in Bethnal Green Road, near Shoreditch, which it plans to re-open as the Well & Bucket next April. Francis-Baum told M&C Report that the next two openings for the group could be critical in terms of whether the group’s further expansion plans would be self-funded. He said: “We are increasingly being approached by venture capitalists and private equity players regarding investing in the business and it is something we will have to consider going forward, but if the next two openings work out we could go forward as a self-funded entity.”