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EU: Linde, Praxair end $60 billion merger talks

 |  September 12, 2016

German industrial gases group Linde and US rival Praxair have ended talks to create a $60-billion-plus market leader, they said on Monday, after failing to agree where to locate key activities and who would run the business.

Although the logic of the deal was clear, the talks foundered on where the combined firm would have its headquarters and research and development, and who would occupy the main management roles, three sources familiar with the matter said.

One of the sources said the two chief executives had on Sunday “agreed to disagree” and dropped the plan to create a rare merger of equals.

“While the strategic rationale of a merger has been principally confirmed, discussions about details, specifically about governance aspects, did not result in a mutual understanding,” Linde said in a statement.

A top 10 shareholder who asked not to be named because he is not authorized to speak to the media said it was disappointing that the deal had fallen through but he could understand the reasons and Linde was a strong company that could stand alone.

“It’s not a situation where the company is in danger,” he said, adding that Linde could offer other measures such as share buybacks to support the stock price. His firm had not been consulted about the mooted merger, he added.

Full Content: Reuters

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