Linde AG says that it has decided to resume talks over the essential terms of a potential merger of equals between it and Praxair Inc. All members of the supervisory board support resuming the talks.

At the same time Dr Wolfgang Büchele, CEO of Linde, has offered to the Supervisory Board that he resigns his mandate, effective from the end of today. Thus, continuity for the forthcoming negotiations is ensured. The supervisory board has accepted this request and appointed Professor Dr Aldo Belloni to succeed him as CEO.

Belloni, who served on the executive board of Linde from 2000 to 2014, will take up office on 8 December. His appointment runs to the end of 2018.

‘With the resumption of the talks, a successful merger is now drawing near,’ said Dr Büchele. ‘I have already set a course for my own future and with this step I am acting in the best interest of the company. With a succession plan in place, the necessary continuity is assured without interruption for the demanding tasks of the coming months. I am very pleased that, with the resumption of the merger talks, Linde's leading global role is close at hand.’

‘On behalf of the Supervisory Board, but also on my own personal behalf, I would like to thank Wolfgang Büchele for everything he has contributed to our company and for his trusting working partnership,’ said Professor Dr Wolfgang Reitzle, chairman of the supervisory board. ‘Wolfgang Büchele took on the role of chief executive officer in economically and structurally challenging times. We are therefore all the more thankful for his introduction of initiatives to secure and extend Linde's leading role in the global marketplace.’

This story is reprinted from material from Linde, with editorial changes made by Materials Today. The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent those of Elsevier.