“Market Cap $259.56 B As of May 2014
At a Glance
- Industry: Conglomerates
- Founded: 1892
- Country: United States
- CEO: Jeffrey Immelt
- Website: www.ge.com
- Employees: 307,000
- Sales: $143.26 B
- Headquarters: Fairfield, Connecticut
#7 Global 2000
- #24 in Sales
- #27 in Profit
- #47 in Assets
- #8 in Market value
#7 World’s Most Valuable Brands
#90 Innovative Companies (2012)
General Electric Co. is a technology and financial services company that develops and manufactures products for the generation, transmission, distribution, control and utilization of electricity. Its products and services include aircraft engines, power generation, water processing, security technology, medical imaging, business and consumer financing, media content and industrial products. The company operates through eight segments: Power & Water, Oil & Gas, Energy Management, Aviation, Healthcare, Transportation, Home & Business Solutions and GE Capital. The Power & Water segment serves power generation, industrial, government and other customers worldwide with products and services related to energy production. The Oil & Gas segment supplies mission critical equipment for the global oil and gas industry, used in applications spanning the entire value chain from drilling and completion through production, liquefied natural gas and pipeline compression, pipeline inspection, and downstream processing in refineries and petrochemical plants. The Energy Management segment provides integrated electrical products and systems used to distribute, protect and control energy and equipment. It manufacture electrical distribution and control products, lighting and power panels, switchgear and circuit breakers that are used to distribute and manage power in a variety of residential, commercial, consumer and industrial applications. The Aviation segment produces, sells and services jet engines, turboprop and turbo shaft engines, and related replacement parts for use in military and commercial aircraft. Its military engines are used in a wide variety of aircraft including fighters, bombers, tankers, helicopters and surveillance aircraft and as well as marine applications. The Healthcare segment provides healthcare technologies such as medical imaging and information technologies, medical diagnostics, patient monitoring systems, disease research, drug discovery and biopharmaceutical manufacturing technologies. This segment predicts and detects disease earlier; monitoring its progress and informing physicians, and helping physicians tailor treatment for patients. The Transportation segment provides technology solutions for customers in various industries, which include railroad, transit, mining, oil and gas, power generation and marine. It also provides portfolio of service offerings designed to improve fleet efficiency and reduce operating expenses, including repair services, locomotive enhancements, modernizations, and information-based services like remote monitoring and diagnostics. The Home & Business Solutions invests in the development of differentiated products such as energy efficient solutions for both consumers and businesses. Its products include major appliances and subsets of lighting products are primarily directed to consumer applications, while other lighting products and automation solutions are directed towards commercial and industrial applications. The GE Capital segment’s services include commercial loans and leases, fleet management, financial programs, home loans, credit cards, personal loans and other financial services. It provides its services for all sizes of businesses worldwide. The company was founded by Thomas A. Edison in 1878 and is headquartered in Fairfield, CT.“
“General Electric History
During 1889, Thomas Edison had business interests in many electricity-related companies: Edison Lamp Company, a lamp manufacturer in East Newark, New Jersey; Edison Machine Works, a manufacturer of dynamos and large electric motors inSchenectady, New York; Bergmann & Company, a manufacturer of electric lighting fixtures, sockets, and other electric lighting devices; and Edison Electric Light Company, the patent-holding company and the financial arm backed by J.P. Morgan and theVanderbilt family for Edison’s lighting experiments. In 1889, Drexel, Morgan & Co., a company founded by J.P. Morgan andAnthony J. Drexel, financed Edison’s research and helped merge those companies under one corporation to form Edison General Electric Company which was incorporated in New York on April 24, 1889. The new company also acquired Sprague Electric Railway & Motor Company in the same year.
At about the same time, Charles Coffin, leading Thomson-Houston Electric Company, acquired a number of competitors and gained access to their key patents.
General Electric was formed by the 1892 merger of Edison General Electric Company of Schenectady, New York, and Thomson-Houston Electric Company of Lynn, Massachusetts, with the help of Drexel, Morgan & Co. Both plants continue to operate under the GE banner to this day. The company was incorporated in New York, with the Schenectady plant used as headquarters for many years thereafter. Around the same time, General Electric’s Canadian counterpart, Canadian General Electric, was formed.
In 1896, General Electric was one of the original 12 companies listed on the newly formed Dow Jones Industrial Average. After 118 years, it is the only one of the original companies still listed on the Dow index, although it has not been on the index continuously.
In 1911 General Electric absorbed the National Electric Lamp Association (NELA) into its lighting business. GE established its lighting division headquarters at Nela Park in East Cleveland, Ohio. Nela Park is still the headquarters for GE’s lighting business.
Owen D. Young, through GE, founded the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) in 1919 to further international radio. GE used RCA as its retail arm for radio sales from 1919, when GE began production, until separation on 1930. RCA would quickly grow into an industrial giant of its own.
GEs history of working with turbines in the power-generation field gave them the engineering know-how to move into the new field of aircraft turbosuperchargers.Led by Sanford Alexander Moss, GE introduced the first superchargers during World War I, and continued to develop them during the Interwar period. Superchargers became indispensable in the years immediately prior to World War II, and GE was the world leader in exhaust-driven supercharging when the war started. This experience, in turn, made GE a natural selection to develop the Whittle W.1 jet engine that was demonstrated in the United States in 1941. GE ranked ninth among United States corporations in the value of wartime production contracts. Although their early work with Whittle’s designs was later handed to Allison Engine Company, GE Aviation emerged as one of the world’s largest engine manufacturers, second only to the British company, Rolls-Royce plc.
In 2002, GE acquired the windpower assets of Enron during its bankruptcy proceedings. Enron Wind was the only surviving U.S. manufacturer of large wind turbines at the time, and GE increased engineering and supplies for the Wind Division and doubled the annual sales to $1.2 billion in 2003. It acquired ScanWind in 2009.
Some consumers boycotted GE light bulbs, refrigerators and other products in the 1980s and 1990s to protest GE’s role in nuclear weapons production.
With IBM (the largest), Burroughs, NCR, Control Data Corporation, Honeywell, RCA and UNIVAC, GE was one of the eight major computer companies of the 1960s.
GE had a line of general purpose and special purpose computers. Among them were the GE 200, GE 400, and GE 600 series general purpose computers, the GE 4010, GE 4020, and GE 4060 real time process control computers, the DATANET-30 and Datanet 355 message switching computers (DATANET-30 and 355 were also used as front end processors for GE mainframe computers). A Datanet 500 computer was designed, but never sold.
In 1962, GE started developing its GECOS (later renamed GCOS) operating system, originally for batch processing, but later extended to timesharing and transaction processing. Versions of GCOS are in use today.
In 1964–1969, GE and Bell Laboratories (which soon dropped out) joined with MIT to develop the Multics operating system on the GE 645 mainframe computer. The project took longer than expected and was not a major commercial success, but it demonstrated concepts such as single level store, dynamic linking, hierarchical file system, and ring-oriented security. Active development of Multics continued until 1985.
It has been said that GE got into computer manufacturing because in the 1950s they were the largest user of computers outside the United States federal government, aside from being the first business in the world to own a computer. Its electronics manufacturing plant “Appliance Park” was the first non-governmental site to host one. However, in 1970, GE sold its computer division to Honeywell, exiting the computer manufacturing industry, though it retained its timesharing operations for some years afterwards. GE was a major provider of computer timesharing services, through General Electric Information Services (GEIS, now GXS), offering online computing services that included GEnie.
Also in 1986, Kidder, Peabody & Co., a U.S.-based securities firm, was sold to GE and following heavy losses was sold to PaineWebber in 1994.
In 2002, Francisco Partners and Norwest Venture Partners acquired a division of GE called GE Information Systems (GEIS). The new company, named GXS, is based inGaithersburg, Maryland. GXS is a provider of B2B e-Commerce solutions. GE maintains a minority stake in GXS.
Also in 2002, GE Wind Energy was formed when GE bought the wind turbine manufacturing assets of Enron Wind after the Enron scandals.
In 2004, GE bought 80% of Universal Pictures from Vivendi. Vivendi bought 20% of NBC forming the company NBCUniversal. GE then owned 80% of NBC Universal and Vivendi owned 20%. By January 28, 2011 GE owned 49% and Comcast 51%. On March 19, 2013, Comcast bought GE’s shares in NBCU for $16.7 billion.
In 2004, GE completed the spin-off of most of its mortgage and life insurance assets into an independent company, Genworth Financial, based in Richmond, Virginia.
Genpact formerly known as GE Capital International Services (GECIS) was established by GE in late 1997 as its captive India based BPO. GE sold 60% stake in Genpact to General Atlantic and Oak Hill Capital Partners in 2005 and hived off Genpact into an independent business. GE is still a major client to Genpact getting its services in customer service, finance, information technology and analytics.
In May 2007, GE acquired Smiths Aerospace for $4.8 billion.
In 2007, GE Oil & Gas acquired Vetco Gray for $1.9 billion, followed by the acquisition of Hydril Pressure & Control in 2008 for $1.12 billion.
GE Plastics was sold in 2008 to SABIC (Saudi Arabia Basic Industries Corporation). In May 2008, GE announced it was exploring options for divesting the bulk of its consumer and industrial business.
General Electric’s Schenectady, New York facilities (including GE’s original headquarters) are assigned the ZIP code 12345. (All Schenectady ZIP codes begin with 123, but no others begin with 1234.)
On December 3, 2009, it was announced that NBCUniversal will become a joint venture between GE and cable television operator Comcast. The cable giant will hold a controlling interest in the company, while GE retains a 49% stake and will buy out shares owned by Vivendi.
Vivendi will sell its 20% stake in NBCUniversal to GE for US$5.8 billion. Vivendi will sell 7.66% of NBCUniversal to GE for US$2 billion if the GE/Comcast deal is not completed by September 2010 and then sell the remaining 12.34% stake of NBCUniversal to GE for US$3.8 billion when the deal is completed or to the public via an IPO if the deal is not completed.
On March 1, 2010, General Electric (GE) announced that the company is planning to sell its 20.85% stake in Turkey-based Garanti Bank.
In August 2010, GE Healthcare signed a strategic partnership to bring cardiovascular Computed Tomography (CT) technology from start-up Arineta Ltd. of Israel to the hospital market.
In October 2010, General Electric acquired gas engines manufacture Dresser Inc. for a $3 billion deal and also bought a $1.6 billion portfolio of retail credit cards from CitigroupInc.
On October 14, 2010, GE announced the acquisition of data migration & SCADA simulation specialists Opal Software.
December 2010: For the second time this year (after Dresser acquisition), General Electric Co. bought the oil sector company British Wellstream Holding Plc. an oil drilling pipe maker for 800 million pounds ($1.3 billion).
March 2011: GE announced it has completed the acquisition of privately held Lineage Power Holdings, Inc., from The Gores Group, LLC.
April 2011: GE announced it had completed its purchase of John Wood Plc’s Well Support Division for $2.8 billion. This acquisition expands the extensive drilling and surface manufacturing and services portfolio of GE Oil and Gas, a division of GE Energy.
GE Capital sold its $2 billion Mexican assets to Santander for $162 million and exit the business in Mexico. Santander will additionally assume the portfolio debts of GE Capital in the country. The transaction was finished in 2011. GE Capital will focus in the core business and will shed its non-core assets.
In June 2012, CEO and President of GE said that the company would invest 300 crores to accelerate its businesses in Karnataka.
In October 2012, General Electric Company acquired $7 billion worth of bank deposits from Metlife Inc.
In April 2013, General Electric Co acquired oilfield pump maker Lufkin Industries for $2.98 billion.
In April 2014, it was announced that GE was in talks to acquire the global power division of French engineering group Alstom for a figure of around $13 billion.A rival joint bid was submitted in June 2014 by Siemens and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) with Siemens seeking to acquire Alstom’s gas turbine business for €3.9 billion, and MHI proposing a joint venture in steam turbines, plus a €3.1 billion cash investment. In June 2014 a formal offer From GE worth $17 billion was agreed to by the Alston board. Part of the transaction involved the French government taking a 20% stake in Alstom to help secure France’s energy and transport interests, as well as French jobs. A rival offer from Siemens-Mitsubishi Heavy Industries was rejected. The acquisition was expected to be completed in 2015.”
*Information from Forbes.com and Wikipedia.org
**Video published on YouTube by “General Electric“