US-based aerospace and defence company Raytheon Technologies has posted sales of $15.3bn and adjusted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.90 for the first quarter of the year.

The company noted that sales were above the midpoint of the outlook that it provided in January.

Adjusted EPS exceeded expectations and was supported by better-operating profit at all four of Raytheon’s businesses, namely Collins Aerospace, Pratt and Whitney, Raytheon Intelligence and Space, and Raytheon Missile and Defense.

EPS from continuing operations was $0.51, which included $0.39 of net non-recurring or significant items and acquisition accounting adjustments. Free cash flow in the quarter was $336m.

The company maintained its backlog of $147.4bn, resumed its share repurchase programme and repurchased $375m of shares.

Collins Aerospace’s sales were $4.4bn in the quarter, down by 32% on an adjusted basis. Pratt and Whitney’s sales were $4bn, with year-on-year sales down by 24%.

Raytheon Intelligence and Space’s sales were $3.8bn, a 2% increase compared to the prior year on an adjusted pro forma basis.

Raytheon Missile and Defense’s sales were $3.8bn, a 3% year-on-year increase on an adjusted pro forma basis.

Raytheon Technologies CEO Greg Hayes said: “Raytheon Technologies delivered strong first-quarter results, with sales, adjusted EPS and free cash flow above our initial expectations. This has given us the confidence to increase the low end of our sales and adjusted EPS outlook.

“Earlier this month, we marked the first anniversary of our transformational merger, and our successful execution on the integration to date has enabled us to increase our gross cost synergy target by $300m to $1.3bn.

“Our strong cash position and positive outlook also allow us to increase our share buyback plan for the year from $1.5bn to at least $2bn, and raise our second-quarter dividend by more than 7%.”

Raytheon has set its full-year financial outlook for the year for sales to between $63.9bn and $65.4bn, up from between $63.4bn and $65.4bn. It expects its second-quarter sales to be in the range of $15.5bn to $16bn.