The administrators of Wessex Taverns are in talks with a potential buyer of the business.
Accountants Grant Thornton, called in as administrators after North East pubco Wessex ran into problems last month, said it is in talks with an un-named buyer hoping to acquire the entire 32-pub group.
Joe McLean of Grant Thornton said: "Discussions with the potential purchaser are at a reasonably advanced stage. If the shares are sold the interests of employees and creditors, both secured and unsecured, will have been safeguarded.
"There has been considerable interest from a number of parties, reflecting the potential of the business."
"The business is continuing to trade as normal at all locations. The group's suppliers and all 450 employees have shown tremendous loyalty and commitment to the group by their continued support."