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Nov 22, 2017

10 Largest Companies Based in the Washington D.C. Area

By Vildana Hajric
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Washington D.C., the crossroads of  American politics and our nation’s political history, is known for its iconic monuments, grand buildings, and renowned museums. The nation’s capital welcomes 22 million visitors every year who flock to see its historic attractions.

The city is home to the White House,the official residence of the president of the United States, as well as the U.S. Capitol,the Supreme Court of the United States, and the Lincoln Memorial, a national monument honoring the sixteenth president.

The D.C. area is also a bustling business metropolis, playing host to numerous Fortune 500 companies spanning a wide array of industries.

These are the largest companies in the Washington D.C. area based on market cap as of November 2017.  Market cap is the total dollar value of a company’s shares. It’s often used to evaluate a company’s market value.

1. Lockheed Martin (LMT)

  • Headquarters: Bethesda, MD
  • Market cap: $89.96 billion

Lockheed Martin is a military contractor known for its supersonic fighter aircrafts but the company also serves a number of civil and commercial clients. Lockheed manufactures products for various industries, including space, telecommunications, electronics, aeronautics, and energy.

Lockheed Martin designs the F-16 fighter jets, the F-35 stealth fighter, armored combat vehicles, missile launchers, as well as other advanced aircraft and munition systems. Its aeronautics division makes combat aircraft and UAVs, while some of its other divisions make satellites and space travel and air and missile defense systems, as well as ship and submarine combat technologies.

In 2016, the company posted net sales of $47.2 billion, nearly three-quarters of which came from sales to the U.S. government. The Department of Defense accounts for around 60% of those sales.

Lockheed has 97,000 employees worldwide. It’s also a large employer of U.S. military veterans, one in five of its employees has served in the armed forces. In fact, if you own Stash’s Defending America ETF, you are the owner of a very small fraction of this company.

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The D.C. area is also a bustling business metropolis, playing host to numerous Fortune 500 companies spanning a wide array of industries

2. Danaher (DHR)

  • Headquarters: Washington, D.C.
  • Market cap: $64.82 billion

Danaher, a  diversified industrial and medical conglomerate, operates in a number of different industries, developing tools, conducting scientific research, and operating drinking water purification systems.

The company was built largely through acquisitions and has the following segments: life sciences; diagnostics; dental, including orthodontic bracket systems and lab products; environmental and applies solutions for two divisions: water quality and product identification.

Danaher has manufacturing and distribution facilities in more than 60 countries around the world.  Its dental products are used in more than 95 percent of dentist offices around the world.

In 2015, Danaher acquired Pall Corp., a water filtration and purification company, for $13.6 billion. In 2016, Danaher acquired  Cepheid, a molecular diagnostics company for $4 billion.

In July 2016, Danaher spun off its industrial division  Fortive Corporation, in order to focus on its science and technology businesses.

3. General Dynamics (GD)

  • Headquarters: Falls Church, VA
  • Market cap: $59.78 billion

General Dynamics is another diversified defense company that offers a variety of products, including combat vehicles, weapons systems, nuclear-powered submarines, and aircrafts. Its Marine Systems division, which booked 2016 revenues of more than $8 billion, is a major shipbuilder for the U.S. Navy.

Though the company is a lead supplier to the Pentagon – the U.S. government accounts for about 60 percent of its sales. General Dynamics provides cyber security, communications systems, computers for use in harsh environments such as extreme temperatures or dusty conditions, antennas, sensors, and cameras. On its civilian side of its  business, General Dynamics produces mid-and-large cabin business aircrafts.

In 2016, General Dynamics posted revenues of more than $31 billion.

4. Northrop Grumman (NOC)

  • Headquarters: Falls Church, VA
  • Market cap: $52.30 billion

Northrop Grumman is a defense and security company known for its military equipment, bombers, satellites and drones. With its 67,000 employees, it is the third-largest military contractor in the world by employees, behind Lockheed Martin and Boeing.

Northrop has four business segments: Aerospace systems, which includes aircraft and spacecraft; electronic systems, which makes radars and sensors as well as chemical detectors; information systems, which manufactures products used for intelligence, reconnaissance, and surveillance; and technical services, including training and simulation.

The company is designing and constructing the James Webb Space Telescope, an $8.8 billion observatory that is meant to capture the oldest light in the universe.

Northrop’s total sales in 2016 amounted to $24.5 billion, of which more than 80 percent came from U.S. government contracts.

5. Marriott International (MAR)

  • Headquarters: Bethesda, MD
  • Market cap: $44.87 billion

Marriott International is the world’s largest hotel chain.With i more than 1.1 million rooms in 125 countries, it eclipses other companies  Hilton and Hyatt. While the hotel giant has more than 6,200 properties, it owns few individual hotels. The company instead manages or franchises its brands to hundreds of individual owners or real estate developers.

In 2016, Marriott acquired Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide for $13 billion, merging its Ritz-Carlton and Courtyard brands within Starwood’s Sheraton, Westin, and St. Regis properties. The company has a total of 30 brands, including W, Residence Inn, Fairfield Inn & Suites, Four Points, among others.

6. Capital One Financial (COF)

  • Headquarters: McLean, VA
  • Market cap: $41.69 billion

Capital One offers financial products, including personal banking services and loans, to consumers, small business owners and corporate clients. The company also provides loans for real estate developers and investors for affordable housing and multifamily projects.

It ranks as one of the largest banks in the U.S. by assets and is listed 48th on Forbes’ 2017 list of America’s top companies. Capital One has more than 50,000 employees.

The company has a recognizable slogan thanks to commercials by stars such as Jennifer Garner and Samuel L. Jackson who ask: “What’s in your wallet?” It serves approximately 45 million customer accounts and its worldwide portfolio is worth more than $200 billion.

It has three business segments: consumer banking, credit cards, and commercial banking.

7. AvalonBay Communities (AVB)

  • Headquarters: Arlington, VA
  • Market cap: $25.89 billion

This real estate investment trust (REIT) develops and operates multifamily communities around the country.

AvalonBay’s specialty lies in upscale and luxury-living properties in large cities such as Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Boston. It owns more than 240 apartment communities and has more than 75,000 apartment homes.

8. Hilton Worldwide (HLT)

  • Headquarters: McLean, VA
  • Market cap: $23.33 billion

Hilton owns and manages hotels, resorts, and time share properties around the world. Its global empire includes nearly 5,000 hotels and resorts. Besides its flagship Hilton brand, some of its most-recognizable brands include Doubletree, Embassy Suites, and Hampton Inn. The company also owns the Waldorf-Astoria brand.

In July 2007, Blackstone acquired Hilton Worldwide for $26 billion, taking the company private. In October 2013, Hilton once again became a public company, raising $2.4 billion during the IPO.

The company was founded by Paris Hilton’s great-grandfather Conrad Hilton, who started building hotels in 1919.

9. T. Rowe Price (TROW)

  • Headquarters: Baltimore, MD
  • Market cap: $22.89 billion

T. Rowe Price is a financial services company that provides asset management to individuals as well as institutional investors. It helps clients manage stocks, assets, bonds, mutual funds, and other portfolios.

The company also offers retirement plan advice for individual investors and offers corporate retirement plan management. Its mutual funds are geared towards growth investing. Rowe Price employs around 6,300 employees and has nearly $950 billion in assets under management.

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10. Host Hotels & Resorts (HST)

  • Headquarters: Bethesda, MD
  • Market cap: $14.78 billion

Host Hotels & Resorts owns luxury and full-service hotels around the world and is one of the largest real estate investment trusts (REITs). It owns more than 570 properties, mostly in the U.S., but also has properties in Canada, Chile, Mexico, Brazil, and other countries, totaling nearly 50,000 rooms.

The company’s properties are managed by third parties and many operate under the Marriott brand. In 2016, Host Hotels & Resorts posted revenues of $5.4 billion.

Written by

Vildana Hajric


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