Federal Trade Commission Approves Linde AG Acquisition
July 19, 2006
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has approved Linde AG's proposed $14 billion acquisition of the BOC Group plc (England). The clearance is subject to certain divestitures to address FTC concerns relating to atmospheric gases and wholesale bulk liquid helium. Linde AG (Germany) agreed to sell eight air-separation units in the United States and to end three liquid helium purchase agreements in the United States, Russia and Poland, as well as associated assets. Linde AG, which will become the world's largest industrial gases company (a 22% share of global sales) with this acquisition, and BOC are expected to have sales of approximately $14.3 billion. Completion of the offer is expected in September 2006.