Northrop Grumman Corporation: Brief Overview
Northrop Grumman Corporatio is an American multinational aerospace and defense technology company. It has 90,000 employees and with an annual revenue in excess of $30 billion, it is one of the world’s largest weapons manufacturers and military technology providers.The firm ranks No. 96 on the 2020 Fortune 500 list of America’s largest corporations.
Northrop Grumman and its industry partners have won the Collier Trophy eight times, most recently for developing the X-47B, the first unmanned, autonomous air system to operate from an aircraft carrier
Northrop Grumman leads the development of the B-21 Raider, a long-range, stealth strategic bomber that can drop conventional and nuclear weapons; it will replace Northrop’s own B-2 Spirit, the world’s only known stealth bomber.
Among its other current projects are development and production of the James Webb Space Telescope, an orbiting observatory slated for launch in 2021; and production of the solid rocket boosters for NASA’s Space Launch System program. It was the sole bidder on the Air Force’s Ground Based Strategic Deterrent program, which aims to develop and build a new intercontinental ballistic missile.
Northrop Grumman is made up of 4 main business sectors: Aeronautics Systems, Defense Systems, Mission Systems and Space Systems.Prior to Northrop Grumman’s reorganization of its divisions on January 1, 2020, the divisions were: Aerospace Systems, Mission Systems, Technology Services, and Innovation Systems.
Northrop Grumman Corporation History
Northrop Grumman dates back to beginning of the 20th century when the Grumman Corporation was founded on Long Island, NY. During World War II it built all American Navy aircraft. After the war it branched out into making the first aluminum canoes using left-over materials no longer needed for aircraft.
Later the firm created a myriad of products such as ballistic missiles, all-weather radars, the Apollo Lunar Module, land and sea-based fighter aircraft and Stealth bombers. Originally formed in California in 1939 by Jack Northrop, the Northrop Corporation was reincorporated in Delaware in 1985.
After the end of the Cold War, Northrop went on a series of acquisitions where they bought noteworthy companies such as Grumman Aerospace, Westinghouse and TRW Inc. in addition to a number of other enterprises.
In 2018, Northrop Grumman completed the purchase of Orbital ATK, which has since been renamed to Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems. Now, Northrop Grumman is one of the largest defense contractors in the world
Northrop Grumman Corporation Revenue
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Northrop Grumman Corporation Management
From 1990 to 2003, before the merger with Grumman in 1994, Kent Kresa was the CEO of the company, who led the serial-acquisition strategy with a total of 15 additional acquisitions from 1994 to 2003, including Litton, Logicon, Westinghouse’s defense electronics business, Ryan Aeronautical and Newport News Shipbuilding, and TRW. He then retired in 2003 at age 65.
In 2003 Ronald Sugar, the former chief operating officer, took over as CEO. Effective October 1, 2003, Sugar also served as the company chairman of the board.
In January 2010, Wes Bush succeeded as CEO and became company president.
In November 2015, Gloria Flach was named COO. She is the former president of the company’s electric services sector.
On July 12, 2018, Wes Bush announced that he would step down as CEO effective January 1, 2019, and would remain chairman of the board until July 2019. His successor is Kathy J. Warden, who has served in numerous roles at the company, most recently president and COO.
Northrop Grumman Corporation Accolades
Northrop Grumman was named Forbes’s Company of the Year in 2002. Forbes’s announcement credited the company with “master[ing] the art of innovation.”As of 2019, the company is included on Forbes’ list of “America’s Best Large Employers”.
Since 2005 Northrop Grumman credits itself with sponsoring educational programs and donating thousands of dollars to various charities.
Many members of the U.S. government have attended company events and spoken highly of the company and its contributions, for example John McCain. In December 2007, Northrop Grumman Corporation was awarded the Ron Brown Award for Corporate Leadership, the only presidential award recognizing companies for outstanding achievement in employee and community relations
In 2000, Northrop Grumman was designated a Primary Responsible Party under federal Superfund laws at 13 hazardous waste sites and under state Superfund laws at eight sites.The corporation has also been linked to 52 superfund toxic waste sites.
Based on 2008 data, Northrop Grumman was the 62nd-largest corporate producer of air pollution in the United States, per the Political Economy Research Institute of the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Northrop Grumman facilities released more than 23,798 pounds of toxic chemicals into the air in that year.
In 2002, the Bethpage Community Park in Bethpage, New York, owned by the company until the 1960s, was closed due to soil contamination with polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).The company dumped cadmium, arsenic, chromium-tainted sludge, solvents, paints and PCBs at the site between 1949 and 1962.
Additionally, two toxic chemical plumes centered under Bethpage Community Park and other surrounding land formerly owned by Grumman or Northrop Grumman have spread to under neighboring houses.
In November 2013, the Bethpage Water District filed a multimillion-dollar lawsuit against Northrop Grumman in Federal Court for the Eastern District of New York for contaminating the groundwater in Bethpage.
Political contributions and governmental ties
From 1990 to 2002, Northrop Grumman contributed $8.5 million to federal campaigns. According to PAC summary data compiled by Source Watch, the company gave US$1,011,260 to federal candidates in the 2005–2006 election cycle, compared to $10,612,837 given by all defense contractors in the same cycle.
This donation amount was only behind that of General Dynamics and Lockheed Martin in the defense industry. The majority of the contributions, 63%, went to Republicans.
Former Northrop Grumman Electronics Systems chief James G. Roche served as Secretary of the Air Force for two years under George W. Bush. Roche would eventually be nominated to head the Army, but withdrew his nomination among accusations of mismanaging a contract with Boeing and of failing to properly handle the Air Force sexual assault scandals of 2003
Northrop Grumman Corporation Controversies
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Northrop was the target of several high-profile criminal and civil cases.
In 1995, Robert Ferro, an employee for TRW Inc., a company Northrop Grumman acquired in 2002, discovered that satellite components manufactured for the U.S. Air Force (USAF) were faulty and likely to fail in operation.
TRW suppressed Ferro’s report of the problem and hid the information from the USAF, even after a satellite in space equipped with the faulty components experienced serious anomalies. Ferro later sued Northrop Grumman in federal court under the federal whistle-blower law.
In 1999, the company was sued for knowingly giving the Navy defective aircraft. This suit sought $210 million in damages.Ten years later, on April 2, 2009, Northrop Grumman agreed to pay $325 million to settle the suit. Ferro was awarded $48.8 million of the settlement. Northrop Grumman stated, “it believed that TRW had ‘acted properly under its contracts’ and that the company had substantive defenses against the claims.