Top 100: Business booming for Boeing as company celebrates centennial
- By Mark Hoover
- Jun 07, 2016
Now in its hundredth year, business is booming more than ever at Boeing Co., with the company securing the No. 3 spot on the 2016 Washington Technology Top 100 rankings with $5 billion in federal prime contracts.
One of the biggest changes of late for the company is that Boeing’s government business—Boeing Defense, Space, and Security (BDS)—has found a new chief executive officer in Leanne Caret.
Caret’s heritage is rooted in Boeing. A daughter of two Boeing employees, Caret has been a long time Boeing employee and has held positions on all levels, said Chris Raymond, vice president and general manager, Electronic & Information Solutions.
As BDS CEO, Caret is focusing on four objectives and six specific market areas.
The first objective is running a healthy cost competitive business, Raymond said, with a focus on efficiency and on executing. Second, the company is focused on running a differentiated capability business. Third, the business is focused on making BDS more globally differentiated through depth and scale. The business is on the right track, Raymond said, as a third of its revenue is from international work with countries like the United Kingdom, Australia, Saudi Arabia and India.
“We’d like for Boeing to be seen as the company that can best help enable country-to-country relations in aerospace,” Raymond said.
Lastly, Boeing wants to secure, develop and maintain talent from across the industry to ensure the company can provide value to its customers.
As for the six market areas that Caret will focus on, the first is commercial derivatives, Raymond said. The second is rotocraft. "We are going to remain very focused on [rotorcrafts]. It's a very global business and we have several products there," Raymond said.
The third market area is the company’s satellite business. “We consider ourselves a world leader [in the satellite market], so satellites and human space exploration will be a big focus of our business. That’s really due to the heritage of the business of the work we have done over time with NASA, Raymond said.
The fourth area is in the autonomous vehicles space, which Raymond said includes not only unmanned aerial vehicles but also unmanned underwater vehicles, or UUVs.
The company just unveiled in March its Echo Voyager, which can operate for months at a time by utilizing a hybrid, rechargeable power system and modular payload bay. “We think it will be a very disruptive operational capability in the future,” Raymond said.
The fifth focus is on human space exploration, and Raymond said the company is working with NASA to accomplish this.
The final focus is the company’s global sustainment and services business, which Raymond said has been one of the company’s fastest growing businesses.
But in light of the hustle and bustle, the company is still taking the time to celebrate its centennial. “My personal view is that there are not a lot of companies that get to be 100 years old, and I think sometimes we almost take for granted as if that is an easy thing,” Raymond said.
To honor its history, Boeing is launching global exhibits both domestic and international that showcase the company’s impact over the years. “It’s both for celebrating the heritage of the company but also for the attraction; we’re trying to inspire students and kids to the world of aerospace,” Raymond said.
Boeing will also be featured in a few television programs that are airing right now.
Mark Hoover is a senior staff writer with Washington Technology. You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org, or connect with him on Twitter at @mhooverWT.