DANBURY, Conn. -- The Danbury-based industrial gas company Praxair announced Tuesday that it will merge with the German company Linde AG to form a new Connecticut-based company worth an estimated $65 billion.
The companies intend to combine in a merger of equals under a new holding company. The merger would bring together two of the leading companies in the global industrial gas industry, and is designed to unite Linde's leadership in technology with Praxair's efficient operating model.
The company will operate under the Linde name. Praxair Chairman and CEO Steve Angel would serve as the CEO of the new company.
"The strategic combination between Linde and Praxair would leverage the complementary strengths of each across a larger global footprint and create a more resilient portfolio with increased exposure to long-term macro growth trends," said Angel. "We consider this to be a true strategic merger, as it brings together the capabilities, talented people and best-in-class processes of both companies, creating a unique and compelling opportunity for all of our stakeholders."
"Under the Linde brand, we want to combine our companies’ business and technology capabilities and form a global industrial gas leader. Beyond the strategic fit, the compelling, value-creating combination would achieve a robust balance sheet and cash flow and generate financial flexibility to invest in our future," said Aldo Belloni, CEO of Linde.
The new holding company would be formed, with the CEO based in Danbury. Corporate functions would be split between Danbury and Munich to help achieve efficiencies for the combined company.
The two companies said they expect to complete their internal approvals and execute a definitive Business Combination Agreement in the coming months.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy praised the news of the merger Tuesday.
“We are proud to have a globally recognized corporation like Praxair consider Connecticut home and we applaud the decision of these two companies to maintain a significant presence here – this truly is a win for our state," Malloy said.
"Praxair is an innovation-driven, industry leader that knows first-hand the extraordinary value of being in Connecticut with our highly skilled, productive workforce that is second to none and provides companies with a competitive edge. We are proud of the partnership we have built with Praxair over the years and look forward to having this growing international company call Connecticut its home for many more years to come.”