US snack maker Lance and pretzel firm Snyder’s of Hanover have received clearance from the US Federal Trade Commission for their proposed merger.

The firms announced the deal last month, in a transaction that will combine the two firms in a stock-for-stock merger of equals, creating a company to be called Snyder’s-Lance.

The merger is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of this year and is still subject to shareholder approval by Lance and Snyder’s stockholders and the completion of other customary closing conditions.

“We are pleased with the quick and orderly review of our proposed merger by the Federal Trade Commission and their decision for early termination,” said Carl Lee, president and CEO of Snyder’s.

David Singer, president and CEO of Lance, added: “We remain very excited about the potential strength and scale of the combined companies and the value that the merger will bring to our consumers, customers and shareholders.”

Snyder’s-Lance will have pro-forma combined net sales of around US$1.6bn and adjusted EBITDA of around $170m. The combination is expected to generate more than $3m in annualised synergies.