Bar operator Springwood Leisure has hinted it is ready for a major acquisition as it expands into new markets.
Chairman Adam Page has unveiled plans to create an Indian restaurant brand to develop alongside its Zanzibar late-night venues.
It hopes to launch the first by the end of this month, with seating for up to 200 people a time, becoming "the first pub company to involve themselves in this sector".
The Midlands operator, which has 19 bars and clubs, has stepped up expansion of its successful Zanzibar chain.
After its seventh site opened in Stockton-on-Tees last month, more are due to arrive this summer in Burton-on-Trent in Staffordshire, Kidderminster in Hereford & Worcester and Birmingham.
But Page said it was keen to make a significant acquisition after it pulled out of talks to take over rival Kingfisher Leisure, which owns the McClusky's bar chain.
"We are looking at opportunities and looking at them seriously," he said.
"It does cost some money and quite a lot of management time that we haven't really got, but we feel we should be involved in the process."
He would not reveal which packages were being considered. Several companies are selling venues at the moment, such as Allied Leisure, while the merger of Luminar Leisure and Northern Leisure may be followed by some disposals.
Page said: "We're not interested in size for its own sake. We're looking to add real value. There are opportunities now to do that.
"The deal that we walked away from was on the question of price. Some businesses that have been sold have gone for more than they were worth.
"But we do have the other option of organic growth which we continue to pursue."