DANBURY, Conn., January 24, 2007 — Praxair Distribution, Inc., a subsidiary of Praxair, Inc. (NYSE: PX), announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Mittler Supply, Inc., a leading independent distributor of industrial, medical, specialty gases and related welding equipment and supplies, operating in Indiana, Michigan and Illinois. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The agreement is subject to regulatory approval and other customary closing conditions.
Founded in 1946, Mittler operates a state-of-the-art cylinder-gas fill plant, specialty-gas laboratory and a centralized warehouse for distribution of welding equipment and supplies at its headquarters located in South Bend, Indiana. The firm also operates several satellite cylinder-gas fill plants and 18 retail sales and distribution locations in the three states. The business generated sales of $73 million in 2006 and has 210 employees.
"The addition of Mittler Supply to our existing network in the Great Lakes area further strengthens Praxair's ability to serve customers throughout this important region," said Praxair Distribution President Wayne Yakich. "The Mittler family has built a premier business with 61 years of strong commitment to superior customer service, and each of its employees is a welcome addition to the Praxair team. We look forward to continuing this tradition of service by providing our new Praxair customers with a comprehensive array of packaged gases, welding equipment, supplies and services."
"The opportunity presented by combining our business with Praxair benefits our customers and employees," said Mittler Supply Chairman Tom Mittler. "The customers will have a greater assurance of product supply from our primary supplier, Praxair, and our employees will enjoy increased growth and expansion possibilities by becoming part of a national distribution network. My family is very grateful to these customers and employees, and we sought the best business partnership possible for both constituencies."
Yakich said Mittler Supply and its employees will be integrated as part of Praxair Distribution's 4,100 employees in North America. The acquisition of Mittler Supply complements 10 other, smaller acquisitions of independent distributors that Praxair Distribution has made in the U.S and Canada over the past 12 months.
Praxair, Inc. 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.