The owner of Frankie & Benny's has announced plans for three new outlets at Birmingham international Airport.

The Restaurant Group, which released its annual results yesterday, said it planned to open a Frankie & Benny's restaurant and a Pash deli-cafe in terminal one by June.

This was in addition to its recently launched Expresso coffee shop, also in terminal one.

"We already operate in 40 outlets in airports across the UK and are delighted to now have a presence in Birmingham as well," chief executive Andrew Page said.

Mr Page praised Birmingham Airport management and said the Restaurant Group would be keen to open further outlets at the airport in future.

His comments came as it revealed reduced exposure to the high street had protected it from a consumer slump.

The group - which also owns brands such as Garfunkel's and Mexican grill Chiquitos - saw pretax profits climb 21 per cent to £29.5 million last year after like-for-like sales rose three per cent.

It said December's sale of its Caffe Uno chain meant more of its interests were likely to generate better margins.

The group said that pulling out from the "increasingly competitive and rather crowded high street pizza and pasta market" left it focused out-of-town locations such as airports, multiplex cinemas and shopping malls where there were greater "barriers to entry" for competitors.

Less than ten per cent of sales now come from high street restaurants, compared with nearly a third in 2004.

The group owns 13 restaurants in the West Midlands, 12 of which are Frankie & Benny's, its most popular brand.

The chain made up two-thirds of the group's turnover for 2005 with £189 million of sales. It has 114 outlets - including some converted from the underperforming Deep Pan Pizza Company which is being phased out.

Chiquitos saw operating profit rise 48 per cent while the concessions division, which includes restaurants at airports and shopping centres, grew profits by 27 per cent to £8.9 million, helped by the opening of three outlets at Luton Airport.

"Given the more challenging economic backdrop and widely reported consumer spending fragility this is, in our view, a very strong result," said analyst Greg Feehely at Altium Securities.

"The only retained brand that had a tough year was Garfunkels - unsurprising given the impacts of the London bombings."