DANBURY, Conn., September 13, 2004 — Praxair, Inc. (NYSE:PX) today announced that Praxair Distribution, division of Praxair Canada Inc., has signed an agreement to provide welding gases and hardgoods to TSC Stores Ltd., a London, Ontario, Canada-based retailer that specializes in hardware and farm supplies. By the end of this year, Praxair's industrial cylinders-exchange and store-within-a-store programs will be available at all of TSC Stores' 25 retail outlets in southwestern and eastern Ontario.
The industrial cylinders exchange program allows customers to purchase new cylinders or exchange empties for full ones of Praxair’s unique Star™ gases and blends for welding and cutting. The store-within-a-store program includes a Praxair display and product area designed to help customers with all welding and cutting equipment needs, including Praxair’s exclusive ProStar® brand products.
"We're working hard to grow our reputation as 'The Incredible Country Hardware Store' and differentiate ourselves from the competition," said TSC Stores’ President Roy Carter, in London. "Praxair's extensive expertise, particularly in welding and cutting applications, will help us better service the needs of our customers including farmers, small contractors, and hobbyists."
"The combination of our gases and hardgoods under one roof will provide TSC Stores’ retail customers with one-stop shopping for high quality welding products and solutions,” noted Wayne Yakich, president of Praxair Distribution, Inc., a subsidiary of Praxair, Inc. “Being chosen as a key supplier to this innovative and fast-growing organization also gives Praxair an important extension of our retail channel."
The gases that will be available at TSC Stores are oxygen, acetylene, carbon dioxide, argon, and argon-based mixtures for welding and cutting, nitrogen for pressurizing, purging and leak testing, and helium for balloons. The hardgoods line will offer welding and cutting machines, gas apparatus (e.g. regulators, torches and hoses), consumables (e.g. wire and tips), and safety products (e.g. glasses, welding helmets and gloves).
With 23 stores and annual sales of CDN$91 million in fiscal 2004, TSC Stores is opening two new retail outlets in Ontario this year, and is planning to open four more in 2005 and six in 2006. Stores range in size from 10,000 to 28,000 square feet, and an expanded, fully-automated distribution center will be completed by 2006. For more information about TSC Stores, visit the web site at www.tscstores.com.
Praxair Distribution, Inc. and Praxair Distribution, division of Praxair Canada Inc., and their subsidiaries and distributors deliver a large array of industrial, medical and specialty gases, equipment, supplies, and services to thousands of customers in the United States and Canada. With hundreds of locations throughout North America, Praxair Distribution provides differentiated product and service offerings that help customers achieve their objectives faster, better and at lower total cost.