DANBURY, Conn., July 25, 2007 — The board of directors of Praxair, Inc. (NYSE: PX) has authorized the repurchase of up to $1 billion of its common stock, reflecting the company’s strong balance sheet and growing free-cash-flow generation from operations.
"This share repurchase program reflects the confidence we have in the long-term growth prospects for our business, and our commitment to increasing shareholder value," said Steve Angel, chairman and chief executive officer. "Our first priority will continue to be investing in profitable growth projects; however, due to our high return on capital, we expect to generate increasing levels of cash flow."
The share repurchases are expected to be completed over the next two years. Share purchases may take place from time to time on the open market or through negotiated transactions, subject to market and business conditions. The purchases will be financed by available cash and debt. This program replaces the repurchase program in effect since 1997 which has been used primarily to offset the dilutive effect of shares issued under employee stock benefit plans and the dividend reinvestment and stock purchase plan.
The board of directors also has declared a quarterly dividend of 30 cents per share, unchanged from the previous quarter. The dividend is payable on September 17, 2007 to shareholders of record on September 7, 2007.
The company will be holding a teleconference to discuss second-quarter, results this morning, July 25, at 11:00 am Eastern Time, and may provide additional information regarding the share repurchase program. The number is (617) 614-3528. The passcode is 39150012. The call also is available as a webcast at www.praxair.com/investors.
Praxair is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest worldwide, with 2006 sales of $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.
This document contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are based on management’s reasonable expectations and assumptions as of the date the statements are made but involve risks and uncertainties. These risks and uncertainties include, without limitation: the performance of stock markets generally; developments in worldwide and national economies and other international events and circumstances; changes in foreign currencies and in interest rates; the cost and availability of electric power, natural gas and other raw materials; the ability to achieve price increases to offset cost increases; catastrophic events including natural disasters, epidemics and acts of war and terrorism; the ability to attract, hire, and retain qualified personnel; the impact of changes in financial accounting standards; the impact of tax, environmental, home healthcare and other legislation and government regulation in jurisdictions in which the company operates; the cost and outcomes of litigation and regulatory agency actions; continued timely development and market acceptance of new products and applications; the impact of competitive products and pricing; future financial and operating performance of major customers and industries served; and the effectiveness and speed of integrating new acquisitions into the business. These risks and uncertainties may cause actual future results or circumstances to differ materially from the projections or estimates contained in the forward-looking statements. The company assumes no obligation to update or provide revisions to any forward-looking statement in response to changing circumstances. The above listed risks and uncertainties are further described in Item 1A (Risk Factors) in the company’s latest Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC which should be reviewed carefully. Please consider the company’s forward-looking statements in light of those risks.