A private Birmingham hospital is one of nine that have been acquired by BMI Healthcare, it was revealed yesterday.

Nine Nuffield hospitals, including the Birmingham Nuffield in Somerset Road, Edgbaston, have been transferred to BMI, boosting its total number of centres to 58.

The private health firm has also acquired Nuffield sites in Bury St Edmunds, North London, Gerrards Cross, Harrogate, Huddersfield, Lancaster, Lincoln and Nottingham.

Each hospital will retain their existing staff and consultants.

Adrian Fawcett, chief executive of General Healthcare Group, of which BMI Healthcare is a subsidiary, said: "Staff and consultants working in each of these hospitals have established reputations within their local communities, and I am confident that we can continue to provide even better personalised, proactive and preventative care for patients in these areas."

All nine sites will be changed to the BMI Healthcare brand over the coming months.

Meanwhile, the owner of the former Bupa hospitals business yesterday added ten more hospitals to its portfolio in a £145 million deal.

Private equity firm Cinven bought Bupa's 25 hospitals for £1.44 billion last year, renaming the business Spire Healthcare.

Spire has now snapped up Classic Hospitals from fellow private equity firm LGV Capital - becoming the UK's second largest private healthcare firm behind BMI healthcare.

Classic Hospitals, which has around 270 beds and more than 2,000 staff, has sites around the country at Farnham in Surrey, Reading, Halifax, Blackpool, Hull, Liverpool, Wakefield, Macclesfield, Hythe, and Wrexham.

The firm is the sixth largest private healthcare firm in the UK.

Cinven partner Simon Rowlands said the firm represented an "attractive acquisition". He said: "Classic Hospitals is a very high quality business with excellent facilities that complement Spire's existing units."

In the UK, Cinven also owns Partner-ships in Care, which provides mental healthcare services, as well as private hospital groups in France and Spain.

Classic Hospitals, which is based in Reading, was formed in 2005 after it bought nine hospitals from Bupa for £85 million, buying Liverpool's Lourdes Hospital from a religious order a year later.

LGV has invested £23 million in updating the facilities since the deal. Classic Hospitals increased revenues by 19 per cent to £94 million in 2007.

Classic Hospitals chairman Gavin Simonds said: "Since Classic was formed, tremendous progress has been made and the company has benefited from LGV's support for significant investment in development of the facilities."