LONDON, Dec. 21 (UPI) -- Shell and BG Group said Monday they plan to have shareholders vote in their planned merger, one of the industry's largest, at the end of January.
BG Group said it sent a petition related to the merger to a high court in London. That should help clear the way for the merger of the two energy giants.
"Shell and BG shareholder meetings to approve the recommended combination are expected to be convened on Jan. 27 and 28, 2016, respectively," the companies said in a joint statement. "A further announcement will be made in due course."
The latest announcement on the planned $70 billion merger follows a report from The Daily Telegraph in London, which suggested some shareholders may be wary of the deal. The Telegraph reported Monday that investment firm Capital Group unloaded about $150 million worth of shares in BG Group. The divestment came one week after other investors said the deal doesn't make sense, given the steep drop in crude oil prices.
When Chinese anti-trust authorities cleared the merger last week, BG Group Chief Executive Helge Lund said integration was supported by "strong industrial logic." Shell, however, said the merger would result in 2,800 redundancies across the combined group. That means about 2,800 employees will lose their job once the merger is completed in early 2016.