Air Liquide, a global producer of gases, said Monday it has completed the $10.3 billion acquisition of Airgas Inc., to create of the biggest suppliers of industrial gases and associated products with annual sales of more than $22 billion and 68,000 employees around the world.
The merger of the industrial gas companies required the divestiture of the Chattanooga Air Liquide facility on North Access Road to satisfy anti-trust objections raised by the Federal Trade Commisison. The FTC ordered Air Liquide Holdings Inc. to divest itself of 12 other properties as part of its acquistion of competitor Airgas Inc., which also must divest four of its properties to enhance competition in the marketplace.
"There is strong industrial and market logic to this acquisition, which ideally positions Air Liquide for future growth," said Benoît Potier, chairman and CEO of Air Liquide. "The two businesses are highly complementary, and the transaction extends our customer base through a unique, multi-channel distribution network and a nationwide presence in the U.S."