The merger of Northrop Grumman and TRW in 2002 created the “Big 5″ club of US defense contractors — namely, Boeing, General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and Raytheon.
But a foreign-owned company — BAE Systems PLC — broke into the exclusive group in 2008, displacing Raytheon, which moved to sixth. Here’s the updated chart from USspending.gov:
BAE is only one of several European companies that have made huge inroads into the US domestic defense market since the 1990s. EADS, Finmeccanica and Thales are also deeply invested on US territory, despite persistent calls for a protectionist stance on defense industrial policy.
A few months ago, BAE Systems’ top US media rep Greg Caires provided me with comprehensive briefing of the company’s current footprint in North America. I transcribed the paper briefing into the a PowerPoint file above.