A depressed mining services market led to the owners of Force Equipment pulling out of an attempt to sell the large private contractor after offers fell short of expectations.
Partners Barry Stewart and Greg Bond received expressions of interest after entering a sale process but decided to shelve plans to exit the business until sentiment recovered.
The pair founded Force Equipment in Kalgoorlie in 1987. The company provides Caterpillar equipment for mining operations in the Goldfields, Pilbara and Queensland, turning over $155 million in the past financial year.
"As you would expect during our 26 years in business, we do from time to time receive approaches regarding selling the business and the recent past is no exception," said Mr Bond, who is also a prominent trotting trainer.
"In light of the current weak valuations and a volatile market, we've dismissed the idea of doing anything with the business in the near future."
Mr Stewart said in the past a public float of the company had also been "briefly" considered among options for funding growth.
"However, the environment is clearly just not right for a mining service IPO," he said. "That is not to say in the future we wouldn't entertain the idea."
The exploration of a sale of Force Equipment follows Ausdrill last year paying brothers Greg and Brian Murphy $165 million for mining equipment supplier Best Tractor Parts. It was a price Ausdrill boss Ron Sayers has since admitted came at the top of the market.
This year saw investor sentiment to the sector turn sour. Shares of listed companies plunged and the float of private equity-owned logistics provider Bis Industries was postponed.
Force had gross assets of $181 million at June 30, according to annual results filed with the corporate regulator. It has 329 employees and net assets of $55 million.
While Best Tractor Parts, an Ausdrill subsidiary, and listed rival Emeco Holdings have struggled in the mining downturn, Force reported higher revenue and profit in 2012-13.
Its net profit of $22 million was up 13 per cent from the year before and a best-ever result. It paid out $7 million in dividends.
The owners attribute Force's resilience to long-term contracts and a focus on production. Client projects include Fortescue's Christmas Creek iron ore mine and Evolution Mining gold mines in the Wheatbelt and North Queensland.
"Over the past two years we've invested heavily in our equipment, people and our overall fully maintained service offering," Mr Bond said.
That has included opening workshops in Kalgoorlie, Port Hedland and Mackay.
"We believe we have a very strong, viable and vibrant business that's got a lot of growth ahead of it," he said.