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L3Harris In talks to acquire Aerojet Rocketdyne for $4.7B

 |  December 19, 2022

L3Harris Technologies has announced plans to acquire Aerojet Rocketdyne for $4.7 billion, a transaction that, if approved, would see the nation’s sole independent solid rocket motor manufacturer bought up by a major defense prime, reported Reuters. 

The deal, which was announced tonight and is subject to approval by the Federal Trade Commission, is expected to close in 2023.

Aerojet is a key supplier of propulsion systems and energetics for missiles, space systems, hypersonics and other precision weapons. It is the only US-based manufacturer of certain technologies, which has caused regulators to harshly scrutinize past attempts to purchase the company — especially after its main rival, Orbital ATK, was purchased by Northrop Grumman in 2018.

Read more: Lockheed Martin Ends $4.4B Deal To Buy Rocketdyne After Tough Merger Review

In January, the FTC filed suit to block Lockheed Martin from buying Aerojet in a $4.4 billion transaction. The regulatory body’s major concern was that, because Lockheed is one of the biggest prime contractors that makes missiles and space systems, its purchase of Aerojet would give it the chance to cut out its competition. Lockheed walked away from the deal in February.

In a statement, L3Harris and Aerojet said the newly-announced deal would bolster the defense industrial base at large.

“The acquisition will ensure the defense industrial base and our customers will have a strengthened merchant supplier to effectively address both current and emerging threats – and promote scientific discovery and innovation – through targeted investment in advanced missile technologies, hypersonics and more,” the companies said in a joint statement.