Adventure Bar has strengthened its senior team as it eyes further growth, MCA has learnt.

The cocktail bar group, which is set to complete the acquisition of its ninth site early next month, has appointed former Be At One financial controller, Phil Somjen, as finance director.

Somjen has also previously held finance roles at Soho House and Gordon Ramsay Holdings. Adventure Bar has also appointed Graham McDonnell, previously head of talent at Turtle Bay, as HR director and is close to bringing on an operations director, co-founder Tom Kidd told MCA.

Kidd said the next opening, in London’s Soho, will kickstart a growth plan of at least three new bars a year.

He said the company, whose venues include The Escapologist Bar, Tonight Josephine, Bar Elba and Waikiki, had a couple of sites at heads-of-terms stage in “Zone 1” on new leases, which would open within the next three or four months.

The company has been having “tentative conversations” about potential investment but Kidd said it was not an avenue he was desperate to pursue.

“The market for people like us is if we can move quickly on deals there’s a huge amount of opportunities coming to the fore so we are just talking to a few people about potentially something along those lines. We are looking at our options,” he said.

Should Adventure Bar decide to go down the finance route, MCA understands it could look in the ballpark of between £5m and £10m which would allow the company to accelerate growth.

He also revealed that the company was reviewing is debt facilities. It currently has a £2.2m facility with OakNorth.

He said: “Without investment we will open three bars a year, accelerating to four or five by year five. With investment we could accelerate that to probably four, year one, and five or six in year two and a similar trajectory onwards,” said Kidd.

“The big thing for us is really the profile of the sites. We trade across eight venues and don’t have any that make less than quarter of a million pounds EBITDA so our intention is to continue in that manner.”

The company’s return-on-investment model was a maximum of three years and it wanted to continue in that vein. “With an investment happening we would probably target higher-return models,” said Kidd. “We are very picky about our business model and sites. Our overhead model is extremely tight which allows us to convert so well,” he added.

He said the group was “not about rolling out a brand”. It liked to do “different things in different sites”.

“We are always happy to do joint ventures with landlords and other operators. We are having conversations at the moment about a joint venture with a big London landlord. They want a slice of the action so we’re always happy to do that if the deal’s right,” explained Kidd.

One of its joint ventures – with the Bourne family, who own Waterloo Estate, is the rooftop at Waterloo, where it operates Bar Elba. The rooftop has added a deck, increased capacity from 450 to 600 covers and secured a later licence.

Dip & Flip which operates the food side at the venue, is introducing a poke and shawarma brand to the offer. All the improvements would be completed in about 10 days, said Kidd.