Cafe Rouge](http://www.caterersearch.com/A-Z/CompaniesLanding/224/605/Page1.htm) and Strada owner [Tragus ](http://www.tragusholdings.com/)is understood to have made an offer for [Paramount Restaurants](http://www.paramountrestaurants.co.uk/), which runs rival chains Caffe Uno and [Chez Gerard](http://www.caterersearch.com/A-Z/CompaniesLanding/224/617/Page1.htm).
Tragus is looking to buy the firm for less than £50m, as part of a sale auction by Christie & Co, according to the Sunday Times.
Paramount owns nearly 80 outlets, also including fish restaurant Livebait, Bertorelli and Brasserie Gerard.
Royal Bank of Scotland, HSBC and Barclays each ended up with a 20% stake in the company after a £55m financial restructuring last year. The lenders instructed Christie & Co to sell 37 outlets earlier this year, although the firm was also tasked with sounding out a sale of the whole company, with the deadline for bids set for last Friday.
Tragus, which is backed by private equity firm Blackstone, declined to confirm its approach.
By Neil Gerrard
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