Birmingham-based Scrivens Opticians has strengthened its foothold in the South-east, buying the Ronald Brown Group for an undisclosed sum.

The purchase of the 21-branch business, based in London and the Home Counties, follows the acquisitions of the Eye Check and OC Weathersbee groups earlier in the year and takes Scrivens to a national presence of 138 optical branches.

Scrivens chairman and managing director Nicholas Georgevic said: "Scrivens is a strong and profitable business built on solid financial foundations.

"Our successful business formula has enabled us to expand rapidly over the last few years.

"However, we have only achieved this by selecting companies whose background and positioning demonstrate a clear fit with Scrivens' own ethos.

"The Ronald Brown Group is a terrific business built on a commitment to first class customer care and its clear cultural and geographical fit will considerably strengthen our presence in the South-east.

"Like Scrivens, it is a well established family-run operation with a commitment to improving performance by continual investment in staff development and training."

He added: "We will also be introducing the services of the Hearing Company, our hearing care business, into each branch.

"We expect high demand for our free hearing checks with confidential and professional onsite advice from our qualified hearing aid audiologists."

Ronald Brown managing director Jeremy Brown said: "I am delighted to be able to entrust the ongoing care of our customers to a family company whose commitment to customer care and clinical excellence matches our own."