6309 Monarch Park Place, Suite 203
Niwot, CO 80503, USA
Phone (303) 443-5060
Toll free (888) 742-5060
In the settlement, each party denied any wrongdoing or liability and Praxair has agreed to the early termination of its right of first refusal, which was scheduled to expire in 2006. The parties entered into the agreement in order to avoid the time and expense of a lengthy trial scheduled to begin in North Carolina in July. As a result of the settlement, Airgas expects to record a charge to earnings, net of previously established reserves related to the litigation, of approximately $8.5 million ($5.5 million after tax) or$0.08 per diluted share for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended March 31, 2002. As previously announced, Airgas will release its earnings on May 8, 2002.
Airgas, Inc. is the largest U.S. distributor of industrial, medical and specialty gases, welding, safety and related products. Its integrated network of nearly 800 locations includes branches, retail stores, gas fill plants, specialty gas labs, production facilities and distribution centers. Airgas also distributes its products and services through eBusiness, catalog and telesales channels. Its national scale and strong local presence offer a competitive edge to its diversified customer base.