No. 12: Battelle seeks new frontiers

Undersea and climate technologies top company's wish list of new markets

Battelle Memorial Institute

Top 100 revenue: $2.3 billion

20,000 Employees

2006 revenue: $3.8 billion

2006 net earnings: $42 million

2005 revenue: $3.5 billion

2005 net earnings: $29.5 million

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By any standard, the Battelle Memorial Institute had a solid year in the federal space in 2006, earning $2.3 billion in prime government services revenue, or more than 60 percent of its total annual revenues. That performance brought the nonprofit science and technology company in at No. 12 on Washington Technology's Top 100 list.

Nevertheless, Battelle officials envision an even better year for 2007, as the organization has already captured several high-profile contracts in all three of its major lines of business in the year's early months.

"We have been doing extremely well and have grown our government business in almost all federal sectors," said Greg Frank, executive vice president at Battelle. "But we're certainly not resting on our laurels. There are budget challenges out there, and we are careful to anticipate and react to shifting priorities and pick the right lanes to place our strategic focus."

Battelle's most critical wins of late have been in national defense, life sciences and energy. These include the five-year, $9 billion Army Field and Installation Readiness Support Team program, for which Battelle leads a team of 25 subcontractors in support of Army logistics to ensure that soldiers maintain a high state of readiness for equipment, training, maintenance and provisions.

The company has also been tapped to manage the National Biodefense Analysis and Countermeasures Center, a new federal laboratory at Fort Dietrich, Md., that will assess biological threats, analyze suspicious substances and develop antidotes.

Battelle ? which already manages or co-manages five of the Energy Department's national laboratories ? will receive $250 million in five years from the Homeland Security Department and could earn as much as $500 million in 10 years if it exercises all options.

One of the organization's most significant wins doesn't add much to its coffers, Frank said, but the $18 million Midwest Regional Carbon Sequestration Project will position Battelle squarely on the front lines of the efforts to address global climate change. The initiative, a partnership with Battelle, DOE and American Electric Power, will demonstrate the viability of technologies that capture and sequester carbon emissions from a coal-burning power plant in West Virginia.

"This will become a stepping stone for being able to do this for power plants around the world," Frank said, noting that Battelle's Joint Global Change Research Institute, a 10-year-old research initiative partially funded by DOE, will release a report in mid-May summarizing the technologies and resources needed to effectively tackle global warming.

"The Midwest project fits exactly with our mission: to help develop the technology and then translate that into real-world applications," Frank said.

Battelle enjoyed a number of other highlights in 2006 that bode well for continued growth in 2007, Frank said. For example, the organization expanded its laboratories and research facilities at its headquarters near Columbus, Ohio.

Battelle also continued to develop and deliver its ShieldAll and FlexAll materials for use as transparent armor on Humvees and other vehicles in Iraq and Afghanistan. The materials are being manufactured and supplied through a series of contracts with the U.S. Army and Special Forces Operations.

In addition, Battelle began growing its undersea technology business in the wake of its 2005 acquisition of Bluefin Robotics, a company born from research by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) Laboratory. Bluefin, now a subsidiary of Battelle, subsequently won two Navy contracts worth $30 million, including the delivery of 12-inch vehicles under the $18 million Surface Mine Countermeasure Program.

Frank said the combination of Bluefin's AUV platforms and Battelle's sensor technology, client access and business acumen bode well for winning business with the Navy, the oil and gas industry, and the academic community.

"There are particular applications for AUV technology that are needed right now and in the future, and we think that we're now in a position to help clients that need to operate undersea do it much more effectively and efficiently," he said.

On another front, Battelle's information technology services division recently unveiled an information tool that is designed to help government agencies sort through and analyze large amounts of data and identify potential links to terrorists more quickly. The tool, known as Information Product Fusion, is based on analytics developed by Battelle and software created by Dublin-based Sypherlink. The product will open even more national security markets to the organization, including state and local agencies, company officials said.

Although Battelle is best known for its complex scientific and technology applications, Frank is quick to point out that IT "is really the underpinning of everything we do."

Profiles of the Top 20 companies in the 2007 Top 100

No. 1: Lockheed Martin's reinvention

No. 2: With SBInet, Boeing IDS takes flight

No. 3: Northrop Grumman rises to new challenges

No. 4: KBR gets down to business

No. 5: IPO catapults SAIC into a new era

No. 6: Raytheon strives for balance

No. 7: General Dynamics in full sprint

No. 8: Fluor's ready in a pinch

No. 9: L-3 leadership stays the course

No. 10 EDS, Hard-learned lesson

No. 11 CSC, Experience that counts

No. 12: Battelle seeks new frontiers

No. 13: Booz Allen, Quality over quantity

No. 14: Bechtel telecom makes a splash

No. 15: For BAE, persistence pays off

No. 16: ITT makes a push into new markets

No. 17: Dell, Talking about evolution

No. 18: Technology and service fuel IBM

No. 19: Verizon caps off a busy year with a big win

No. 20: United Technologies gains altitude

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