Special Report

15 Companies Making the Most From the Government

General Dynamics Logo
Source: Wikimedia Commons

3. General Dynamics Corporation
> FY 2015 contract obligations: $13.63 billion
> FY 2014 contract obligations: $15.35 billion
> FY 2014-2015 change: -11.2%
> Headquarters: Falls Church, Virginia

Based in Falls Church, Virginia, outside Washington D.C., General Dynamics has a close relationship with the federal government, both in terms of business and geography. In the company’s 2015 fiscal year, $17.98 billion, or 57% of revenue, came from the U.S. government. GD’s primary operations are in aerospace, combat systems, information systems, and marine systems. Like other shipbuilders on this list, GD stands to benefit substantially from President Trump’s proposal to expand the U.S. Navy fleet. According to the company, a portion of its information systems and combat systems segments are actually owned by the government.

The company is also relatively active with non-government customers. Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation, a GD subsidiary, is known for its private business jets. According to the company, more than 2,500 Gulfstream jets have been sold since the 1950s.

Boeing Logo
Source: Boeing / Wikimedia Commons

2. The Boeing Company
> FY 2015 contract obligations: $16.65 billion
> FY 2014 contract obligations: $19.61 billion
> FY 2014-2015 change: -15.1%
> Headquarters: Chicago, Illinois

While Chicago-based Boeing profits immensely from U.S. government contracts, the company is not nearly as dependent on federal spending as other major U.S. contractors. Of Boeing’s 2015 revenue of $96.11 billion, less than one-third, or $30.39 billion, came from its defense, space, and security operations. The remainder of the company’s 2015 revenue, $66.05 billion, was attributable to Boeing’s commercial airplane business. Of the revenue generated from defense contracts, 62% came from sales to the U.S. Department of Defense.

Like many large U.S. manufacturing companies, including top government contractors, Boeing’s corporate strategy will likely change under President Trump. The widely expected higher military spending will certainly help Boeing. On the other hand, Boeing is the country’s largest exporter, and any new or revised trade regulations could have a major effect on the company.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

1. Lockheed Martin Corporation
> FY 2015 contract obligations: $36.26 billion
> FY 2014 contract obligations: $32.23 billion
> FY 2014-2015 change: 12.5%
> Headquarters: Bethesda, Maryland

In 2015, Lockheed Martin acquired helicopter manufacturer Sikorsky Aircraft from United Technologies Corp. for $9 billion. With the acquisition of the Black Hawk helicopter-maker, Lockheed’s annual sales rose considerable, and the company is now the world’s top helicopter manufacturer. While contractors have been generally reporting lower sales due to declining U.S. and Western European military spending, Lockheed’s sales have risen in each of the past three years. Sales to the U.S. government accounted for some 78% of Lockheed Martin’s $46.1 billion 2015 revenue.

The F-35 jet fighter program, the company’s largest, accounted for 20% of total net sales in 2015. Despite the widely expected increase in military spending under President Trump, he has actually vowed to cut spending on the F-35 program.

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