DANBURY, Conn., January 6, 2011 — Praxair, Inc. (NYSE: PX) has named John Panikar president of Praxair Distribution, Inc. The subsidiary, with 2009 sales of $1.3 billion and 470 locations, manages the company’s packaged gases business in the U.S. and Canada.
“John has demonstrated outstanding leadership in a series of important management positions, both in the U.S. and Asia,” said Jim Fuchs, executive vice president. “We look forward to his continued success as he and the PDI team continue to bring advanced products, services and technologies to our 400,000 customers in North America.”
Prior to this assignment, Panikar was vice president of the U.S. South Region of Praxair’s North American Industrial Gases (NAIG) business unit. The 10-state South Region includes Praxair’s major pipeline complex along the Gulf Coast and many of Praxair’s largest refining and petrochemical customers.
Panikar joined Praxair in 1991 and held assignments in operations and project management in Praxair’s electronics business before being appointed Asia business manager for electronics in 1999. He was named director of business development for Praxair Asia in 2002, with additional responsibility for managing the helium, specialty gases, medical gases and carbon dioxide growth markets for Praxair Asia. He became managing director of Praxair India in 2004. He returned to the U.S. in 2008 as vice president of product management and analysis for NAIG and was appointed vice president of the South Region in early 2009. Panikar holds a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Rochester.
Praxair, Inc. is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest worldwide, with 2009 sales of $9 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
Photo available upon request.