DANBURY, Conn and MEMPHIS, Tenn., August 7, 2012— Praxair, Inc. (NYSE: PX), one of the largest industrial
gases companies worldwide, and Memphis‐based nexAir LLC, one of the largest distributors of atmospheric
gases and welding supplies in the United States, announced plans to form a joint venture in the Southeast
According to the terms of the joint venture, Praxair will contribute 8 branches of its packaged gas distribution
business in Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee and acquire an equity stake in the combined business, which will
have sales of approximately $150 million.
“Developing a closer relationship with nexAir allows both companies to expand into new areas that will benefit
from our combined capabilities," said John Panikar, president of Praxair Distribution, Inc., the packaged gas
subsidiary of Praxair, Inc. “Praxair is making major investments in Memphis and the broader southeast region.
Our investment in nexAir is an expression of our confidence in our ability to grow faster together.”
“nexAir has been a successful packaged gas distributor in this region and their growth and success have helped
our industrial gases business tremendously. Together we will have a stronger support network and broader set
of services for customers in the region,” added Panikar.
“We have worked with Praxair for 72 years and we are confident this expansion of that relationship will mean
future opportunities for all involved,” said Kevin McEniry, nexAir CEO. “nexAir’s primary goal has always been to
offer opportunities for our people by increasing our ability to compete and grow profitably, and we believe this
formal partnership aligns perfectly with that goal.”
“Our family is proud to have built nexAir into a successful company that can expand profitably and offer
employees continued opportunities for growth,” said Kevin McEniry. “There will be no changes to the nexAir
leadership team, our culture or to how we conduct business day‐to‐day. nexAir will continue to be nexAir."
Praxair, Inc. (NYSE:PX) is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest
worldwide, with 2011 sales of $11 billion. The company produces, sells and distributes atmospheric, process and
specialty gases, and high‐performance surface coatings. Praxair products, services and technologies are making
our planet more productive by bringing productivity and environmental benefits to a wide variety of industries,
including aerospace, chemicals, food and beverage, electronics, energy, healthcare, manufacturing, metals and
others. More information on Praxair is available on the Internet at www.praxair.com.
nexAir was formed in 1996 through the merger of two family‐owned Memphis companies – Mid‐South Oxygen
Company (founded in 1946) and Standard Welders Supply/Standard Oxygen Service (founded in 1940 and
purchased by the McEniry family in 1950). Bob McEniry served as CEO of nexAir from 1976 to 2007, when he
turned the title of CEO of the third‐generation family‐owned company over to his son, Kevin.
nexAir is one of the largest distributors of atmospheric gases and welding supplies in the United States. Based in
Memphis, the company sells, packages and distributes atmospheric gases, including medical, specialty and
industrial gases. nexAir also sells related products, including welding equipment, welding supplies, safety
supplies and dry ice. Founded in 1940, nexAir serves customers in nine states with 26 locations and more than
270 employees. For more information about nexAir, visit www.nexAir.com.
Katie Wassmer, Archer Malmo, 901‐260‐4277, firstname.lastname@example.org