The sale of Chart Industries to First Reserve will have minimal impact on the organisation, according to the company spokesman.

Jason J. Curtis, Chart corporate director of marketing, explained: “The company was majority owned by two private equity groups with limited shares publicly traded. Under the new ownership, all of the shares will be held by First Reserve, therefore the company will be transitioned to a privately held company.

“Chart went through a pre-packaged chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2003, which allowed for a major reorganisation of the company. Therefore the need for any major changes is not foreseen at this time.”

According to Mr Curtis, the current executive leadership team will remain in place and continue to grow the company in much the same manner as they have for the past two years under Sam Thomas's direction.

“The company will continue to invest its resources into new technologies as well as securing the leading market share in the European and Asian markets. As demonstrated in our soon to be completed state of the art manufacturing facility in China, it will bring the total sites to four in the Chinese market.

Cryogenic equipment market

Chart will continue to lead the market in the development of cryogenic equipment to meet the ever-evolving demands of its customers.

Mr Curtis continued: “The optimistic outlook for our Energy and Chemicals operating group represents the backbone of Chart's growth over the next several years.

“The years of industry experience the First Reserve Management team brings to the Chart organisation greatly increases our ability to capitalise on all the opportunities of the liquid natural gas (LNG) and gas to liquids (GTL) global investment currently taking place.

“Chart had a remarkable emergence from the reorganisation that took place in 2003 with a record profits achieved in 2004. More than half way through 2005, all indications demonstrate a repeat performance. Chart's customers, vendors and employees will continue the focus of the organisation and will remain the corner stones of its success.

The total transaction value is approximately $460 million and is expected to close by the end of October 2005, assuming satisfaction of customary closing conditions.

First Reserve is the leading private equity firm specialising in the energy industry.

For further information:
Chart Industries