Global gas manufacturer seeks $2M tax break on $38.3M project

A global manufacturer of industrial gases is asking Indianapolis officials for a tax break on a $38.3 million project it’s planning at its local base of operations on the south side that would save the firm nearly $2 million over seven years.

Messer LLC, an affiliate of Germany-based Messer Group, wants to build a new air separation unit at 1045 Harding Court for making atmospheric gases for health care providers, food processors, and glass and metal fabricators.

Messer’s products include oxygen, nitrogen, argon, carbon dioxide, hydrogen, helium, inert welding gases and gases for medical use.

The project would be housed in a $3.2 million structure and stocked with $35.1 million in equipment. It would allow Messer to create 23 jobs at the site that pay an average wage of $28 per hour, as well as retain 12 position that also pay an average hourly wage of $28.

Messer has applied for seven-year tax abatements on its investments. Over that period, it would save about $1,968,000 in real and personal property taxes, while still paying about $1,272,000 in taxes. After the abatements expire, it would pay an estimated $344,000 annually in real and personal property taxes.

The Indianapolis Metropolitan Development Commission will consider the request at its meeting on Wednesday afternoon. Department of Metropolitan Development staff has recommended approval of the abatements.

The family-owned Messer Group was founded in 1989 and now counts more than 11,000 employees worldwide. Messer also maintains facilities in La Porte and South Bend.

The gas manufacturing site at 1045 Harding Court previously was owned by Ireland-based Linde Plc. A consortium of Messer Group and CVC Capital Partners Fund VII purchased the majority of Linde’s gas businesses in North and South America earlier this year.

The Indianapolis operation is part of New Jersey-based Messer Americas, which was formed in the Linde acquisition.

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