Finalizing a merger with Praxair is likely to take “several months”, the chief executive of Linde said in a letter to a shareholder association, reiterating he saw no need to ask shareholders to vote on the $65 billion deal.
German industrial gases group Linde and U.S. rival Praxair announced in December their intention to merge to create a global leader, saying at the time they expected to execute a definitive business combination agreement “as soon as possible” in the coming months.
In a letter to German retail-shareholder association DSW filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Linde CEO Aldo Belloni rejected criticism he was not informing shareholders sufficiently about the progress of discussions with Praxair.
He also defended his decision not to call a shareholder meeting to approve the deal.
“I am sure you will understand that developing, negotiating and documenting the details of such a complex merger naturally takes time,” he wrote in the letter dated March 7.
“Speaking from experience with other (often less complicated) mergers, we foresee the whole process taking several months.”
Linde is expected to give an update on its negotiations with Praxair at its full-year results on Thursday.
A source close to the deal said this week the detailed so-called business combination agreement would not be signed this month, due to delays caused by German unions, who fear their influence in a combined company will be diminished.
By Georgina Prodhan and Arno Schuetze
France has launched an offshore green hydrogen production platform at the country’s Port of Saint-Nazaire this week, along with its first offshore wind farm. The hydrogen plant, which its operators say is the world’s first facility of its type, coincides with the launch of another “first of its kind” facility in Sweden dedicated to storing hydrogen in an underground lined rock cavern (LRC).
The project sets up the Hydrogen Valley in Rome, the first industrial-scale technological hub for the development of the national supply chain for the production, transport, storage and use of hydrogen for the decarbonization of industrial processes and for sustainable mobility.
At first glance, hydrogen seems to be the perfect solution to our energy needs. It doesn’t produce any carbon dioxide when used. It can store energy for long periods of time. It doesn’t leave behind hazardous waste materials, like nuclear does. And it doesn’t require large swathes of land to be flooded, like hydroelectricity. Seems too good to be true. So…what’s the catch?