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Headquarters: 870 Winter St.
Waltham, MA 02451
781 522-3000
Employees: 68,000
CEO: William Swanson
Stock Symbol: RTN


Career Site

Raytheon is one of the nation's top defense contractors and responsible for developing the first guided missile. The weapons it has developed include the Sidewinder, Tomahawk and Patriot missiles. It is also a leader in developing radar technology for military and early-warning defense.

Founded as the American Appliance Company in 1922, Raytheon has continued to expand its business scope over the past eight decades, developing into one of the world's largest and most respected technology corporations.

Raytheon has been very successful in adapting technologies originally developed for national defense into products for more commercial use. Raytheon was an original maker of radio tubes. It also converted World War II radar technology to invent microwave cooking.

In 2012, Raytheon had total revenues of $24.4 billion, down from $24.8 billion in 2011. Net income was $1.88 billion. The company reported a backlog of $36.2 billion at the end of 2012.

Raytheon is made up of four major businesses with locations around the U.S. Raytheon had six main businesses but consolidated these down to four in 2013:

-- Missile Systems - Builds combat missiles for military use. Headquartered in Tucson, AZ. Facilities in Arizona, Kentucky, New Mexico, Arkansas, Alabama and California.

-- Integrated Defense Systems -- Develops Patriot anti-missile system and early warning radar. Headquartered in Tewksbury, MA.

-- Intelligence, Information and Services - Develops intelligence-gathering technology for both ground and air reconaissance. Headquartered in Dulles, VA.

-- Space and Airborne Systems - Develops radar for space and missile-defense systems. Headquarters in El Segundo, CA.


Two former college roommates Laurence K. Marshall and Vannevar Bush, founded Raytheon in 1922 as the American Appliance Company in Cambridge, MA along with scientist Charles G. Smith, a young scientist who had developed the prototype for a home refrigerator that used artificial coolants.

Marshall, an engineer, businessman and trained physicist, and Bush, a scientist and professor of electrical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, along with several other financial backers dreamed of prosperity and a potential market for their newly developed refrigerator.

As is the case with so many other entrepreneurs, however, the product that launched the company was a bust and never left the laboratory. Facing failure, it was Marshall and Bush who suggested revisiting an earlier idea young Smith had experimented with: a new kind of gaseous tube that would allow radios for the first time to be plugged into a wall socket and operate on electricity rather than batteries. The tube would overcome the need for two expensive, short-lived A and B batteries, the greatest shortcoming to widespread radio use at the time. By devising a way to replace the B battery with a tube, the small company not only beat out the army of researchers and engineers of RCA, Westinghouse and other corporate giants, it produced a device that forced the entire radio industry into a new direction and made radios affordable and accessible to every household. Perfected and introduced to the public in 1925, the tube, known technically as a gaseous rectifier and marketed under the brand name Raytheon, brought in more than $1 million in sales by the end of 1926 and positioned the company as a major contributor to the fast-growing radio tube market for nearly two decades.

In 1925, the year American Appliance Company began to take off, an Indiana company made it known that it held prior claim to the American Appliance Company name. Because of the success of the Raytheon radio tube, company officials at that time elected to extend the use of the name to describe the entire organization, and the company's name was officially changed to Raytheon Manufacturing Company. "Ray" comes from "rai," an Old French word that means "a beam of light," while "theon" comes from the Greek and means "from the gods." Furthermore, both the product and company name were deemed scientifically appropriate given groundbreaking research at the time on the mystery of the Wolf-Rayet star Zeta Puppis, which emitted bright ultraviolet lines believed to be the result of gaseous substances. Laboratory experiments by C.G. Smith on the source of these gases became the basis of crucial importance to his development of the company's radio tube.

Benefits and Perks

Raytheon offers various levels of Medical, Dental and Prescription drug coverage, as well as vision and health care reimbursement and a wide variety of income protection programs including long and short term disability, life insurance plans, and accidental death insurance policies.

Raytheon's retirement plans include a pension program (vested after five years) and an immediately vested 401(k) savings plan with up to 20% of employee's income, matching 100% of the contribution to the first 4% of eligible compensation. Raytheon also offers a stock ownership program for all of its employees.

Other benefits offered include tuition reimbursement, 12 holidays per year, earned paid time off, reimbursement accounts for dependent care, life resources, adoption assistance, home and auto insurance discounts.

Updated April 20, 2013

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