LEHIGH VALLEY, PA – Air Products, Lehigh Valley, PA, has commenced a fully financed tender offer for all outstanding common shares of Airgas Inc. The offer is for $60.00 per share, cash. The action comes after Air Products’ offer to the management of Airgas to purchase the company for $60.00 per share in cash on Feb. 5, 2010, was declined.
In response to Airgas’ refusal to accept the Feb. 5 offer, Air Products’ management made the following statement: “It is unfortunate that the Airgas Board continues to just say no to Air Products’ $60.00 per share all-cash offer, denying Airgas shareholders the opportunity to receive a substantial premium and immediate liquidity for their shares while removing any risk of future company performance or economic conditions. This continuing refusal to discuss our compelling all-cash premium offer has left us with no alternative but to take the offer directly to Airgas shareholders.
“We respect Peter McCausland and greatly admire the company he founded and matured, but we fundamentally disagree with him on achievable standalone value and do not believe his approach is in the best interests of the owners of the other approximately 90 percent of Airgas shares. We urge the independent directors of Airgas to form a Special Committee that will objectively evaluate our offer and sit down with us to discuss it.”
At $60.00 per share in cash, the Air Products offer provides Airgas shareholders a 38 percent premium to Airgas’ closing price of $43.53 on Feb. 4, 2010.
Headquartered in Pennsylvania, the combined company would be the largest industrial gas company in North America and one of the largest in the world.