After Airgas unveiled its third quarter earnings for the fiscal year 2016, in which total sales were down 3% due to a “challenging industrial economy,” Peter McCausland, Executive Chairman, didn’t seem fazed. In fact, he impassioned about his company and the impending acquisition of the moment.

On 17th November 2015, it was announced that industrial gas giant Air Liquide, will acquire the fellow Tier One company company, in an all-cash transaction and with a total enterprise value of approximately $13.4bn, including debt assumed.

In the transaction, Airgas will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Air Liquide. The merger is expected to complete in the second or third quarter of this year and the combined company will undoubtedly create the world’s biggest industrial gas player.

In a series of emotive quotes, in which he expressed his gratitude, he signifies why the time is now right for, arguably, the biggest acquisition in the industrial gas industry in recent years;

“I am proud of the entire Airgas team and the strong history we have of creating shareholder value. The announced transaction with Air Liquide is very compelling for our shareholders.”

We are excited about the prospects of integrating these two businesses to create the largest industrial gas company in the world.

“Air Liquide’s long-term vision and strong heritage in the US make it the right fit for our valued customers, and the combination creates significant opportunities for the talented employees of both companies.”

“Airgas customers and employees will benefit from Air Liquide’s unrivalled global footprint and strength in technology, innovation and operational efficiency, while Airgas is ready to bring the entrepreneurial culture and packaged gas excellence that have driven our success to date.”

“We are excited about the prospects of integrating these two businesses to create the largest industrial gas company in the world. We have been working closely with the Air Liquide team to plan for the successful integration of the two companies and look forward to finalising the merger when the necessary approvals have been obtained.”

A meeting to confirm Air Liquide’s pending acquisition of Airgas has been scheduled for 23rd February 2016.