A concept backed by the co-founder of Franco Manca to create a chain of “pubs for tea” has launched a Crowdcube fundraising drive.

Albion Tea, the company behind Brew, A Pub for Tea, is raising £180,000 to fund the first phase of growth, which would see a site open in south London in the autumn followed by another in east London a year later. There would then be “a further large round of investment to enable its rapid expansion” via a franchising offer.

The project is headed up by Alex Holland, a former journalist who led the social enterprise that saved Brixton Market from demolition, and supported by Franco Manca co-founder Giuseppe Mascoli as lead investor. Cinnamon Club and Roast founder Iqbal Wahhab told M&C Report his involvement was as a mentor to Holland. Fiona Grant, who is described as having “20 years’ experience as a manager on bars, pubs and clubs” will act as supervisor.

The concept is described as providing “the atmosphere of a pub, but instead of offering pints of beer, serving pots of tea”.

The pitch says: “Brew will tap into this nation’s love of a cuppa and add a twist by pairing it with alcohol and food. As well as tea, Brew will serve tea cocktails, such as Green Tea Martinis, light food and cakes, matched to the flavours of the teas. Open into the evening, Brew will combine the strengths of a great cocktail bar with the all-day trade of a cafe.”

The company is offering a variety of tea-related rewards for investors. It has said investors will be able to exit once the company reaches its franchising push, when they can “exit at a multiple in line with the scale of the expansion, or remain in the company as it grows across London and beyond”.

So far £23,290 has been raised from a £180,000 target for 27.80% equity offered.