Hot topic: Mergers and acquisitions within the gases business – where are we now?


The first decade of the 21st century was a very active one for the industrial gases sector.

Several major acquisitions were made throughout the 10-year period through to 2009 – most notably Linde’s acquisitions of AGA and BOC, Messer’s change in ownership and subsequent divestments and a buyback by the Messer family, Airgas’ purchase of BOC’s and Air Products’ packaged gases business in the US, and the merger of Nippon Sanso with Taiyo Toyo Company to create Taiyo Nippon Sanso (TNSC). These deals themselves amounted to in excess of $16.5bn in value.

Since 2012, mergers and acquisitions (M&A) activity has understandably stagnated, while companies readdressed the way they operated, with more focus on the bottom line, profitability and reducing costs.

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