On 22 October 2018, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission approved the merger between Praxair and Linde subject to divestments which the final approval needed from competition authorities for the transaction to close. The transaction had previously been approved by the European Commission on 20 August 2018 subject to commitments and also gained clearance in several other jurisdictions in Asia, Middle East and South America.
Both Praxair and Linde are among the largest players worldwide with respect to industrial gases, medical gases, specialty gases and helium. In order to address competition concerns, the Parties agreed to divestments in multiple jurisdictions, including the divestment of Praxair’s gas business in the EEA, the elimination of Praxair’s stake in SIAD (a joint venture active in Italy and CEE countries), the divestment of a number of Linde assets in the Americas and the divestment of several global helium sourcing contracts.
A CRA Europe team including Cristina Caffarra, Dan Donath, Raphaël De Coninck, Roman Fischer, Michael Muehlbradt and Kirsten Abeln advised the Parties during the proceedings in several jurisdictions worldwide, including the EU, China, India, South Korea, Taiwan, Russia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Uruguay and Argentina. Our US colleagues advised the Parties in the United States and Canada. This transaction included several in-depth investigations around the world.