DANBURY, Conn., May 16, 2007 — Praxair, Inc. (NYSE: PX) and Yara International ASA of Norway have signed an agreement whereby Praxair would acquire a 50% interest in Yara's industrial gases business in Scandinavia.
The planned joint venture would initially comprise Yara's existing industrial gases businesses located in Norway, Denmark and Sweden. The venture would operate under the name Yara Praxair AS and would be based in Oslo, Norway. Specific terms of the agreement were not disclosed. The intentions are to establish the new company during the third quarter with completion of the transaction subject to satisfaction of certain conditions and obtaining of regulatory approvals.
Yara has served the Scandinavian industrial gases market as one of the leading suppliers to over 30,000 customers for 25 years. The business generated annual sales of approximately USD $150 million in fiscal year 2006.
"Combining the strong market position and name recognition that Yara enjoys in Scandinavia with Praxair's operational expertise and technology offerings, particularly in the areas of energy and environmental applications, creates a very compelling partnership," said Steve Angel, chairman and CEO of Praxair, Inc. "One area of particular interest is combining our technology and experience in enhanced oil recovery projects for certain North Sea oilfields. Also, considering the broad global reach of both organizations, we fully expect there to be additional collaborative ventures in other parts of the world in the future," Angel added.
"Both Yara and Praxair have high ambitions to develop the Scandinavian industrial gas activity further. We are now in a unique position to act together and seize new business opportunities with mutual growth interests and ambitions," said CEO and President of Yara International, Thorlief Enger.
Yara International ASA, with 2006 revenue of more than USD $8 billion, is a leading chemical company that converts energy and nitrogen from the air into essential products for farmers and industrial customers. As the number one global supplier of mineral fertilizers and agronomic solutions, it helps provide food for a growing world population. Its industrial product portfolio includes environmental protection agents that safeguard air and water purity and preserve food quality. Yara's global workforce of 7,000 employees represents great diversity and talent enabling Yara to remain a leading performer in its industry. Additional information is available at www.yara.com.
Praxair, Inc. is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest worldwide, with 2006 sales of USD $8.3 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.