Ed’s Easy Diner has signed a franchise deal with SSP with plans to open 11 sites in transports hubs and visitor attractions by the summer of 2020.

In the same week that Andrew Guy, chief executive, revealed that the 59-strong group was pausing for breath in terms of its expansion plans, after considering a partial company voluntary arrangement earlier this year, it has announced it will open the first site under the new agreement at London’s Liverpool Street Station later this month.

Ed’s will be joined by the first SSP-partnered LEON site at the station plus a new Mi Casa Burritos unit.

Earlier this week, Ed’s, which earlier this year put a sale price on hold after suitors failed to match its £90m price target, said that it was in talks with landlords of three of its 59 sites in relation to handing back the keys to premises.

“We are pleased to welcome Ed’s Easy Diner to Liverpool Street as part of another major Network Rail retail development,” said Hamish Kiernan, commercial director of Network Rail. “Ed’s is one of the fastest-growing casual dining formats in the UK and its franchise partnership with SSP is a perfect combination to drive operating success in the more complex station environment. We believe Ed’s will be a welcome addition to our Liverpool Street portfolio, providing locals and station-users with a unique, US-style diner experience.”

Guy said: “We are delighted to be embarking on the expansion of Ed’s and our first station opening, working with experienced partners SSP. Dwell-time at train stations is certainly increasing and, with a daily footfall of 180,000 people, we’re confident the Liverpool Street Diner will be a success. Together with SSP, we’ll aim to open 10 more Diners by the summer of 2020 in UK stations, airports and visitor attractions.”