AN East Lancashire clean air containment firm has been acquired as part of a £4m deal.

Haslingden-based Envair, which makes fume cupboards and isolators for the healthcare industry, has been snapped up by Cheshire rivals ONFAB.

Investment group Foresight has bankrolled the development, with hopes of creating a larger outfit with complementary product ranges.

Gary Bagshaw, Envair's managinf director, said: "I have led Envair for over 10 years and watched the company grow every year.

"The combination of this business with ONFAB will allow us to expand our reach to a number of large markets while benefitting from their back office and sales infrastructure."]

He has praised the involvement of the team at Foresight, which has a £60million regional investment fund and has helped Middlewich-based ONFAB to grow by more than 30 per cent year-on-year.

Mark Arnold, managing director at ONFAB said though they had thrived in the pharmaceuticals market, they recognised the benefits of combining with a similar firm.

Chris Wardle, Foresight's investment director, said: "The much-enlarged group will represent a platform for the launch of a number of new products and maintenance work across the more than 30 countries in which it operates."