DANBURY, Conn., October 19, 2005 — Praxair, Inc. (NYSE: PX) today announced that its subsidiary Praxair Distribution, a division of Praxair Canada Inc., has signed a long-term agreement with Air Canada, Canada’s largest national airline, for the exclusive supply of airline dry-ice slices for food preparation facilities at seven international airports in Canada. More than two million pounds of individual dry-ice packets will be used to transport perishable food and beverages between flight-kitchen facilities and aircraft each year.
An initial pilot project to test Praxair’s product and supply system was successfully completed in Vancouver, British Columbia, in January 2005. Since then, the servicing of the remainder of the supply chain to Air Canada facilities at airports in Calgary and Edmonton, Alberta; Winnipeg, Manitoba; Toronto and Ottawa, Ontario; Montreal, Quebec, and Halifax, Nova Scotia, has begun.
"Praxair is the only company in Canada with dry ice capability and a reliable distribution network available from coast to coast," said Janet Coffman, vice president of business development for Praxair Distribution. "This contract with Air Canada solidifies our national sales and distribution programs, and provides a very exciting opportunity to grow our business."
Based in Montreal, Quebec, Air Canada operates an average of 630 scheduled daily flights and serves 21 million scheduled and charter customers annually. Air Canada provides scheduled and chartered passenger jet service directly to 21 Canadian cities, 30 U.S. destinations and 54 cities in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Australia, the Caribbean, Mexico and South America.
"This project with Praxair is an important part of Air Canada’s new catering model that significantly improves the cost efficiency of supply to our aircraft," said Roberto Solarino, project manager for Air Canada. "Previously we used a third party to buy all of the necessary products for our flight kitchens. Now we buy directly from national providers, wherever possible, to leverage volume pricing. Praxair is the only company in Canada capable of meeting our requirements."
Praxair is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest worldwide, with 2004 sales of $6.6 billion. The company produces, sells and distributes atmospheric, process and specialty 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.