Airgas Sales Up 5% in Third Quarter - Modern Distribution Management

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Airgas Sales Up 5% in Third Quarter

Profit for the industrial and specialty gases company climbed 14 percent over the same period a year ago.

Airgas, Inc. (NYSE: ARG), Radnor, PA, No. 5 on MDM's list of top industrial distributors, reported sales for its third quarter ended Dec. 31, 2012, were $1.2 billion, up 5 percent over the same period a year ago. Profit grew 14 percent to $82.9 million.

Organic sales in the quarter were up 4 percent over the prior year, with gas and rent up 6 percent and hardgoods down 1percent. Organic sales in the distribution business segment were up 2 percent over the prior year, with gas and rent up 5 percent and hardgoods down 1 percent.

“Moderating activity levels in our industrial customer base throughout the quarter were further exacerbated in late December by uncertainty around the fiscal cliff and by the timing of the holidays during the work week,” said Peter McCausland, Airgas executive chairman. "…Though we remain appropriately cautious about near-term business conditions, we’re very optimistic about the long-term prospects for the U.S. manufacturing and energy industries, as well as non-residential construction, and our ability to leverage our unique value proposition and unrivaled platform to drive growth.”

Airgas acquired seven businesses in the quarter with aggregate annual revenues of $75 million.

For the first nine months of the fiscal year, sales were $3.7 billion, up 5 percent over the same period a year ago. Profit increased 13 percent to $254.7 million.

Since the beginning of its fiscal year, Airgas has acquired fifteen businesses with aggregate annual revenues of more than $94 million.

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