Key highlights outlined today (16th Feb) in Air Liquide’s 2021 financial results centred around the continuing improvement of better healthcare and provision of medical oxygen, the announcement of a plan for the succession of Benoît Potier as CEO, and decarbonisation.

In its results, the company stated that the Board of Directors, which is due to meet at the close of the 2022 General Meeting, will be called upon to renew Benoît Potier’s term of office as Chairman of the Board of Directors and to appoint François Jackow to succeed him as CEO with effect from 1st June, 2022. 

Read more: Air Liquide succession: Benoît Potier to focus on role as Chairman, François Jackow to be new CEO

Sharing that its healthcare sector has seen comparable growth of 7.2%, Air Liquide’s teams have continued focusing on the fight against Covid-19. 

Industry & decarbonisation 

Air Liquide’s Industry sector was boosted by long-term power purchase agreements for renewable energy in Belgium and the Netherlands to help reduce the carbon footprint of the company’s production plants. 

The acquisition of Sasol’s 16 Air Separation Units (ASUs) in Secunda, South Africa, was also finalised. The deal is part of Air Liquide’s efforts to lower carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions linked to oxygen production by 30% to 40% over the next 10 years. 

Read more: Sasol sells 16 ASUs to Air Liquide

Air Liquide Munay Tech Gases (ALMTG), a 75% subsidiary of Air Liquide, acquired and integrated the industrial gas production plants at the Atyrau refinery in Kazakhstan. ALMTG will operate these production plants for KazMunayGas under a long-term contract. 

Read more: Air Liquide to invest €86m in hydrogen and nitrogen units

The company obtained several long-term investments and contracts to supply industrial gases, namely in China, Russia, Germany, and South Korea. 

Other agreements relating to CO2 capture were made including a deal with energy companies to decarbonise the Normandy industrial basin and a project developed with BASF to lower emissions at the Port of Antwerp. 

Read more: Air Liquide partnership to help decarbonise industrial basin, Normandy

Read more: Air Liquide, BASF joint CCS project gains funding from European Commission

An MoU signed with ArcelorMittal is aimed at implementing solutions to produce low-carbon steel in Dunkirk. 

Read more: Air Liquide and ArcelorMittal to decarbonise steel production in Dunkirk

Air Liquide also saw its launch of a new package gas offering for welders, Qlixbi, in Germany, Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands. 

Read more: Air Liquide deploys Qlixbi in multiple European countries

In a record-breaking year, the company signed 48 on-site contracts in Industrial Merchant. 

Read more: Air Liquide’s Industrial Merchant business line celebrates record number of contracts

Energy Transition 

The company joined several partnerships and initiatives to develop low-carbon hydrogen in 2021. These include the launch of the world’s largest clean hydrogen infrastructure fund with a potential of Є1.5bn in partnership with TotalEnergies, VINCI and several international companies. 

Read more: Air Liquide, TotalEnergies, VINCI launch ‘world’s largest’ clean hydrogen infrastructure fund

Other low-carbon aviation related projects involved a partnership with Airbus and VINCI Airports, and an MoU signed with Airbus and Groupe ADP in preparation for the arrival of hydrogen at airports by 2035.

Read more: Air Liquide, Airbus, VINCI Airports join forces on hydrogen airport developments

Healthcare

The company continued its mobilisation of teams in the fight against the pandemic, worldwide, and also acquired Betamed SA, a major player int he home healthcare business in Poland.