50 Leading Companies of the Year 2018

People around the World Depend On Our Products and Services for Their Safety and Security: General Dynamics

thesiliconreview-phebe-n-novakovic-chairman-ceo-general-dynamics-18General Dynamics is a global aerospace and defense company. Incorporated in 1952, General Dynamics is proud of its history serving the aerospace and defense communities. General Dynamics is organized into four business groups: Aerospace, Combat Systems, Information Systems and Technology, and Marine Systems. 

From Gulfstream business jets and combat vehicles to nuclear-powered submarines and communications systems, people around the world depend on its products and services for their safety and security. The company offers a broad portfolio of innovative products and services in business aviation, combat vehicles, weapons systems, and munitions, IT and C4ISR solutions, and shipbuilding and ship repair. General Dynamics employs thousands of people across the globe, with locations in more than 45 countries.

A Sneak Peek into the Company’s History

From 1952 to the 1990s, the company provided tanks, rockets, missiles, submarines, warships, fighters and electronics to all of the military services. In the early 1990s, it sold nearly all its entire portfolio except for its military-vehicle and submarine businesses. Starting in the mid-1990s, it began expanding again by acquiring Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation, combat-vehicle-related businesses, IT product and service companies and additional shipyards, forming the foundation of the company today.General Dynamics has a long list of mergers and acquisitions. It acquired Chrysler Defense in 1982 which later became General Dynamics Land Systems, Cessna Aircraft Company in 1985, Bath Iron Works in 1995 and many more.

Pioneers in Aerospace and Defense Tech

General Dynamics has a balanced business model which gives each business unit the flexibility to stay agile and maintain an intimate understanding of customer requirements. Each business unit is responsible for the execution of its strategy and operational performance. Employees at General Dynamics have pushed the boundaries by embracing change for more than 65 years. The company draws on the rich history of service to the aerospace and defense communities and an agile culture of continuous improvement to create ever-growing value for its customers.

The company has some amazing features that make it the leader in Aerospace and defense tech. Every day, the company:

Drives how it operates its business: General Dynamics relentlessly pursues operating excellence by innovating, improving its processes and reducing waste. It believes in being wise and ethical stewards of capital and resources, as informed by its values.

Governs how it interacts with each other and its customers, partners, and suppliers: Honesty, trust, humanity, alignment, and value creation require the company to be forthright about its mistakes and that it strives to correct them. It seeks partners and suppliers who adhere to these values in their businesses.

Guides the way that it treats the workforce: General Dynamics believes that it has a responsibility for the health and safety of its employees. It treats all of its employees with dignity and respect and provides them with fair compensation and equal employment opportunity. It stands behind basic universal human rights, including that employment must be voluntary.

Determines how it connects with its communities: The company understands that it has a responsibility to be good corporate citizens and it believes in sustainable business practices, which include supporting the environment and the communities in which itworks.

Driving Excellence in its Businesses

General Dynamics’ portfolio spans the realm of the world's most technologically advanced business jets, wheeled combat vehicles, command and control systems and nuclear submarines. The firm offers these through its four business groups: Aerospace, Combat Systems, Information Systems and Technology, and Marine Systems.


The Aerospace group is at the forefront of the business-jet market. General Dynamics' Aerospace group, which includes Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation and Jet Aviation, is at the forefront of the business-jet industry. Gulfstream produces the world's most technologically advanced business aircraft and offers unmatched global product support and service. Jet Aviation provides comprehensive business aviation services, custom completions and a global network of facilities to aircraft owners and operators.

A) Gulfstream Aerospace:Gulfstream was the first civilian aircraft manufacturer to develop an enhanced vision system. The infrared-assisted vision system changed the way pilots fly at night and in obscured-vision situations. Gulfstream advancements also brought a synthetic vision terrain mapping system, the first in-flight high-speed Internet access and an in-flight computerized monitoring system that notifies technicians when service is due.

Behind the technology is industry-leading reliability. The Gulfstream fleet consistently averages a National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) dispatch reliability rating of 99.8 percent.

  • Gulfstream Family of Aircraft:General Dynamicsoffers a comprehensive fleet of aircraft, comprising the G280, the G550, the G500, the G600, the G650and the G650ER.
  • Engineering and Research:Gulfstream designs and develops aircraft at General Dynamics’Savannah Research and Development Center. The campus houses engineers and support staff integral to the research, testing, and development of current and future Gulfstream aircraft. Gulfstream has the only hemi-anechoic acoustic test facility used in the development of business aircraft.
  • Manufacturing:Gulfstream manufactures aircraft at its Savannah, Georgia, headquarters. Gulfstream holds a Federal Aviation Administration Production Certificate, counts more than 900 Lean Specialist trainees among its employees and offers courses in more than 15 different processes and tools focused on Lean initiatives.
  • Completions:Gulfstream offers a wide array of cabin configurations.General Dynamics outfits cabins, paints the exteriors and installs avionics equipment upgrades at its completion centers in Appleton, Wisconsin; Brunswick, Georgia; Dallas, Texas; Long Beach, California; and Savannah, Georgia. The firm completes mid-cabin aircraft at its facility in Dallas.

B) Jet Aviation: Jet Aviation provides comprehensive services and offers a network of locations for aircraft owners and operators.With approximately 30 airport facilities throughout Asia, the Caribbean, Europe, the Middle East, and North America, General Dynamics’ service offerings include maintenance, repair, completions, aircraft management, charter, FBO and staffing services.

Combat Systems

Combat Systems is a global leader in designing, manufacturing and integrating some of the world’s best-performing land combat machines. Its facilities around the world produce wheeled and tracked combat vehicles, to include the Stryker family of vehicles and the Abrams main battle tank. This platform portfolio is supported by a broad range of high-performance weapons systems and munitions.

A) European Land Systems: European Land Systems is a leader in the design and manufacture of wheeled and tracked vehicles and bridge systems. The company serves a global customer base from its operations in Austria, Czech Republic, Germany, Spain, and Switzerland.

B) Land Systems: It is a global leader in tracked and wheeled military vehicles. The Abrams main battle tank, the family of Stryker and LAV wheeled combat vehicles and the AJAX armored fighting vehicles are at the heart of Land Systems' military vehicle platforms.

C) Ordnance and Tactical Systems: The firm provides the U.S. military and its allies an extensive range of weapons systems.Ordnance and Tactical Systems manufactures M2/M2-A1 heavy machine guns and MK19/MK47 grenade launchers. General Dynamics produces weapons systems for U.S. Navy shipboard applications and for fighter aircraft, including high-speed Gatling guns for all U.S. fixed-wing military aircraft.Its munitions portfolio covers the full breadth of naval, air and ground forces applications across all calibers and weapons platforms.

Information Systems and Technology

IS&T delivers technologies, products, and services to a diverse set of customers in support of thousands of programs. IS&T’s diverse portfolio of offerings includes IT solutions and mission-support services; mobile communication, computers, and command-and-control mission systems; and ISR solutions.

Marine Systems

 The Marine Systems group designs, builds and repairs complex ships. Its shipyards design, build and repair nuclear-powered submarines, surface combatants, auxiliary and combat-logistics ships and commercial Jones Act ships. With locations on both U.S. coasts, the company has a long history as one of the primary shipbuilders for the U.S. Navy, constructing, delivering and maintaining the next generation of platforms.

A) Bath Iron Works

Bath Iron Works builds some of the world's most formidable ships.Since 1884, General Dynamics has delivered more than 425 ships to the world's naval and commercial fleets. Today, Bath Iron Works builds naval ships with the same dedication.

General Dynamics is the lead designer and builder of the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, one of the most technologically advanced and capable surface combatants ever built. General Dynamicsis also one of the partners for the Zumwalt class, the Navy's next-generation, multi-mission naval surface combatant.

Arleigh Burke-class Destroyer (DDG-51)

This multi-mission combatant offers defense against a wide range of threats, including ballistic missiles. The DDG-51 operates in support of carrier battle groups, surface action groups, amphibious groups, and replenishment groups, providing a complete array of anti-submarine, anti-air and anti-surface capabilities. Designed for survivability, the ships incorporate all-steel construction and have gas turbine propulsion.

Zumwalt-class Guided-missile Destroyer (DDG-1000)

The DDG-1000 destroyer is the U.S. Navy's next-generation, a guided-missile naval destroyer, leading the way for a new generation of advanced multi-mission surface combat ships. The ships will feature a low radar profile, an integrated power system, and a total ship computing environment infrastructure. Armed with an array of weapons, the Zumwalt-class destroyers will provide offensive, distributed and precision fires in support of forces ashore.

B) Electric Boat:

It is one of the nation's premier submarine builders.Established in 1899, Electric Boat delivered the first submarine to the U.S. Navy in 1900, beginning a century-long history of accomplishment.

Electric Boat has designed and delivered 15 of the U.S. Navy's 19 classes of nuclear submarines. Now in its second centennial of submarine building, Electric Boat is the design yard and prime contractor for the Virginia-class submarine program and General Dynamics is developing the next-generation of ballistic-missile submarines to replace the Ohio class.

Virginia-class Submarine

Virginia-class submarines are designed from the keel up for the full range of 21st-century mission requirements, including anti-submarine and surface ship warfare and special operations support. These submarines excel in littoral and open-ocean environments and collect intelligence critical to irregular warfare efforts with advanced intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capabilities. The 377-foot long submarines are capable of submerged speeds of more than 25 knots and can stay submerged for up to three months at a time.

Columbia-class Ballistic Missile Submarine

The 12-boat submarine program will provide strategic deterrent capabilities well into the 2080s when the current Ohio-class fleet reaches the end of service life starting in 2027. The lead ship is slated to start construction in 2021, with delivery to the Navy in 2027.

Meet the Global Leader

Phebe N. Novakovic, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of General Dynamics:

“We focus on delivering superior products and services to our customers, and creating value for our shareholders through a relentless focus on operational excellence and continuous improvement.”