Kingswinford-based stairlift manufacturer Minivator has been acquired by a Norwegian firm, signalling an exit by its private equity owners.

The firm, previously owned by its directors and Gresham Private Equity, has signed a deal to become part of the Handicare family of healthcare companies, subject to regulatory approval.

The sale will yield Gresham a return on investment of 3.4 times.

The £48 million turnover company said the board were in no rush to sell, but that it had found “the perfect partner” with the Handicare Group - which is backed by private equity firm Herkules.

Minivator chief executive Mike Lord said: “We were looking for a buyer who not only made sound business sense but who was also a great fit with the culture and values that Minivator holds at its core.

“We are delighted with the deal and are looking forward to seeing what the future holds.

“We believe exciting times are ahead and being part of a larger and well-established group that holds similar ethical beliefs will open up many opportunities that will be mutually beneficial and rewarding.”

The partnership with Gresham has allowed the company to significantly expand its activities internationally.

It has established operations in North America and Germany and has recently started its own manufacturing base in the Far East.

James Barbour-Smith, partner at Gresham, who led the exit said: “Minivator is an excellent business led by a first-class management team.

“The business is a great example of how Gresham works with its portfolio companies to develop and grow the business.

“We are particularly pleased with the strong product innovation and international expansion of Minivator under our investment.”

Mr Lord added: “Gresham has been a fantastic partner over the past five years and helped professionalise our business among other improvements.

“We are in an excellent position to continue our growth strategy through the sale of the business to Handicare.”