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Linde sells part of its US bulk business to Airgas


Wiesbaden, 22 November 2006 - The technology group The Linde Group has signed a definitive agreement to sell part of its bulk business in the United States to the industrial gases company Airgas Inc. at a price of 495 million US dollars. The eight air separation plants to be divested had sales of 154 million US dollars and EBITDA of around 55 million US dollars in the financial year 2005. In the first nine months of the financial year 2006 sales increased approximately 10 percent to 126 million US dollars.

This divestiture will comply with one of the conditions imposed by the US antitrust authority, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC,) when it gave its approval for the acquisition of The BOC Group plc by Linde, a transaction which was completed on 5 September 2006.

The companies expect to close the bulk business acquisition subject to regulatory review and customary closing conditions.

The Linde Group is a world leading industrial gases and engineering company with more than 53,000 employees working in around 70 countries worldwide. Following the acquisition of The BOC Group, the company has gases and engineering sales of approximately 12 billion euro. The strategy of The Linde Group is geared towards earnings-based growth and focuses on the expansion of its international business with forward-looking products and services. For more information, please see The Linde Group online at

Airgas, Inc., through its subsidiaries, is the largest US distributor of industrial, medical and specialty gases and related hardgoods, such as welding supplies. Airgas is also the third-largest US distributor of safety products, the largest US producer of nitrous oxide and dry ice, the largest liquid carbon dioxide producer in the Southeast, and a leading distributor of process chemicals, refrigerants and ammonia products.


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