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What a Raytheon merger could mean for Tucson

Local leaders do not expect job losses
Posted at 7:10 PM, Jun 10, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-10 22:10:52-04

TUCSON, Ariz. - It's Tucson's biggest private employer and it may get much bigger.

Raytheon is working towards a merger -- with another huge tech company.

So what could a merger mean for our area?

Raytheon is Pima County's biggest private employer with roughly 12 thousand employees and 2.1 Billion dollars in total impact on Arizona's economy.

Now Raytheon is working towards a merger with another tech giant--United Technologies.

The companies outline their rationale in a shared website.

While Raytheon is strong in products like weapons and radars, United Technologies is a leader in jet engines, and aircraft components for military and civilian aircraft.

Because there's little, if any, overlap in what the two companies do, Pima County Economic Development Director John Moffatt does not foresee a merger cutting Raytheon jobs here.

"But certainly Raytheon missile systems is not something that United Technologies has been doing. So we feel you know, that it's probably complimentary as opposed to competitive."

Raytheon's on a building boom in Tucson, expanding facilities and adding jobs.

Roads and the roadwork near Raytheon’s Tucson site are an example of local government's commitment to keep Raytheon here and growing. A new road was actually diverted to the south to make sure the plant would still have room to expand.

The area around Raytheon has already attracted other tech companies. Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild thinks a merger with United Technologies could accelerate that.

"Especially an aerospace and defense company, when they're looking around the country, if they see a company like Raytheon, they know that they may have a ready workforce. They know they have, for instance, a university that is got an engineering school that is feeding Raytheon, a lot of employees, and that means it can feed a lot of other employees."

And both city and county officials say as the companies come together, they'll want to meet with the new company's leaders to learn what they plan for the future.