Airgas declares strong Q2 growth


Airgas Inc. has reported record earnings and strong growth in sales and operating income for its second quarter, ended 30th September 2008.

Quarterly net earnings grew 44% to reach $72.8m, or $0.86 per diluted share, compared to $50.6m or $0.60 per diluted share in the prior year.

The prior year quarter included $0.04 per diluted share of integration expense primarily associated with the 30th June 2007 acquisition of Linde’s US packaged gas business, and a one-time non-cash charge of $0.03 per diluted share related to the conversion of National Welders Supply Company from a joint venture to a wholly owned subsidiary.

Second quarter sales increased 15% from the prior year to $1.2bn, while acquisitions contributed 7% to the increase and total same-store sales grew 8% in the quarter. Gas and rent rose 12% and hardgoods increased by 4%.

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