Airgas, Inc. has announced the winners of the National Branch of the Year trophies. The awards honour the best of 875 local branches nationwide. The winners, based on fiscal 2011 performance, were:

• Hempstead Highway, Houston, Texas branch of Airgas Southwest
• Midland branch, Michigan in Airgas Great Lakes
• Dickson, Tennessee branch of Airgas Mid-America
• Palmdale, California for Airgas West

Mike Molinini, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Airgas, Inc. commented, “This year’s winners were outstanding examples of local entrepreneurial spirit backed by the resources of our national platform. Their performance was so convincing that we picked four winners instead of our traditional two.”

This is the seventh year Airgas has recognised its top large and small branches for the Airgas Branch of the Year awards. The accolade is based on customer service, financial performance and safety performance. Large branches are described as having more than six employees, while small branches have six or fewer.

Molini offered his individual congratulations: “Hempstead Highway in Houston, Texas, has traditionally been a fabrication-based branch. This year they worked hard to diversify their product mix, including highlighting our own Radnor® brand, and the results were outstanding,” Molinini said.

“The other large branch winner, Midland, Michigan, serves a significant contractor customer base as well as some key customers whose operations have national scope. Their exceptional service locally in Midland helped Airgas secure a contract to build a new air separation plant for a customer in Tennessee.”

“In our small branch category, Dickson, Tennessee, is a model branch, with an impeccable showroom and a track record of consistent strong growth. The Dickson branch also demonstrates strong working capital management, and their commitment to safety and organisational excellence is always on display,” Molinini explained.

“The Palmdale, California, branch has built a significant presence in the area serving the aerospace, agricultural and motion picture markets. Their team has focused on the specific needs of their unique customer base, and their unsurpassed customer service drove the sales growth that made this branch a winner,$quot; finished Molinini.

Each of the four winning branches will shortly display the National Branch of the Year trophies. The emblems of success have been constructed from size 125 cylinders donated by Taylor-Wharton.