Air Products seeks to sell US healthcare business

23 July 2008 03:24  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--Air Products plans to sell its US Healthcare business and will record a $315m (€198m) impairment charge in its third-quarter financial results, the company said on Tuesday.

Pennsylvania-based Air Products said it attempted to improve the business beginning in 2007 but it continued to under perform during 2008.

“Based on a review of the market and competitive conditions, the company determined that the US Healthcare business no longer fits its business portfolio,” Air Products said in a press release.

“Unfortunately, despite progress in a number of areas, the US business is still not meeting expectations, Air Products chairman, president and CEO John McGlade said, adding “At this time, we believe the decision to sell this business is in the best interest of our shareholders.”

McGlade added, “This in no way affects our healthcare operations outside of the US which continue to perform well and remain a core component of our strategy moving forward.”

The company said it plans to report the US Healthcare business as a discontinued operation beginning in the fiscal fourth quarter and will continue to operate and serve patients until the business is acquired by a new owner.

Air Products said it is talking with potential buyers.

Air Products is also announced it has reached a preliminary agreement to sell its US Healthcare businesses in the metropolitan New York area and in New Jersey.

Air Products has been in the US healthcare market since October 2002 when it acquired American Homecare Supply.  The company said it subsequently made additional acquisitions, reaching US sales to $271m in fiscal 2007 by providing respiratory therapies, home medical equipment and infusion services to patients in their homes.

($1 = €0.63)

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By: Brian Ford
+1 713 525 2653



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