Shareholders of defence contractor Raytheon Company and United Technologies Corp (UTC) have approved a proposed merger deal.

During their respective shareholder meeting, all of the necessary proposals to close the merger were approved.

The transaction involves combining UTC’s aerospace businesses Collins Aerospace and Pratt & Whitney with Raytheon.

The newly merged entity would be called Raytheon Technologies Corporation.

Raytheon chairman and CEO Tom Kennedy said: “I am pleased that the shareowners of Raytheon and UTC voted in favour of our powerful strategic combination.

“Today’s vote reflects a significant step on our path to unite two world-class companies with complementary technologies and supports our view that this merger of equals will create additional growth opportunities while delivering benefits to our shareowners, customers and employees.”

The all-stock deal merger was announced in June. UTC shareholders will own 57% of the combined company and the remaining 43% will be held by Raytheon shareholders.

The deal is expected to close earlier next year after meeting mandatory customary closing conditions and receiving required regulatory approvals.

It is also dependent on UTC’s separation of its Otis and Carrier businesses, which would allow the company to focus on aerospace.

United Technologies chairman and CEO Greg Hayes: “Today is an important milestone in our transformational merger, which will define the future of aerospace and defence.

“With our technological and R&D capabilities, Raytheon Technologies will deliver innovative and cost-effective solutions aligned with the highest customer priorities for decades to come.”