DANBURY, Conn., July 29, 2003 — Praxair, Inc. (NYSE:PX) has received the highest rating for corporate governance from GovernanceMetrics International (GMI), a leading independent governance research and ratings agency. Only 17 companies out of a total of 1,600 companies worldwide received the top rating.
GMI's rating system covers more than 600 data points in seven categories, including board accountability, disclosure, executive compensation, shareholder rights, ownership base, takeover provisions and corporate behavior and social responsibility. GMI ratings are used by institutional investors in Europe and North America for risk evaluation and portfolio screening, among other purposes.
"Our board of directors and management team consider outstanding corporate governance to be an important element of Praxair's performance culture and have committed themselves to being a leader in that field," said Dennis H. Reilley, chairman and chief executive officer of Praxair.
The company received similar outstanding ratings from Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS), another leading analyst of corporate governance practices. According to ISS' April analysis, Praxair's governance practices outperform 94.5 percent of the Standard and Poor's 500 companies, and 99.6 percent of ISS' Materials group.
Praxair is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest worldwide, with 2002 sales of $5.1 billion. The company produces, sells and distributes atmospheric and process gases, and high-performance surface coatings. Praxair products, services and technologies bring productivity and environmental benefits to a wide variety of industries, including aerospace, chemicals, food and beverage, electronics, energy, healthcare, manufacturing, metals and others. More information on Praxair is available on the Internet at www.praxair.com.
Susan Szita Gore