Top companies of the decade
Top companies of 2009
Precision Castparts has shown that old-line manufacturing industries such as recycling scrap steel can thrive in today's global market. The Portland company tops The Seattle Times' 19th annual ranking of the region's top public companies for 2009 and for the decade 2000-09.
The low-profile company has benefited greatly from the push by Boeing and Airbus to build big, complicated new planes. For example, each 787 contains about $5.6 million of Precision-made components.
Headquarters: Liberty Lake
Major operations: Automated meter-reading module operations in Minnesota; electricity meter operations in South Carolina; 55 other manufacturing and distribution facilities and 84 sales/administrative offices around the world.
CEO: Malcolm Unsworth
Major products/services: Meters and meter-reading systems for electricity, gas and water utilities
Average annual shareholder return, 2000-09: 27.3 percent
Major operations: Major export facilities in Tacoma, Portland, Oakland and Massachusetts; smaller scrap yards in 15 states and Puerto Rico; steel minimill in Oregon; 47 auto-parts stores in 14 states and Canada
CEO: Tamara Lundgren
Major products/services: Processes and sells ferrous and nonferrous scrap metal; makes finished steel products from scrap; sells used auto parts
Average annual shareholder return, 2000-09: 23.3 percent
Founded: 1905, as Seattle Car Manufacturing Co.
Major operations: Manufacturing plants in Washington (Renton), Ohio, Texas, Mississippi and Oklahoma; also in Australia, Belgium, Canada, Mexico, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom
CEO: Mark Pigott
Major products/services: Light-, medium- and heavy-duty trucks under the Kenworth, Peterbilt and DAF brands; financial services and information technology; truck parts
Average annual shareholder return, 2000-09: 19.3 percents
Major operations: More than 16,000 stores in 51 countries, including 11,000+ in the United States
CEO: Howard Schultz
Major products/services: Coffee, tea, other beverages
Average annual shareholder return, 2000-09: 14.6 percent
Major operations: 111 offices and manufacturing plants in the United States; 64 overseas
CEO: Mark Donegan
Major products/services: Cast- and forged-metal pieces for aircraft engines, gas turbines and other industrial uses; fasteners; specialty alloys
Special sauce: Squeezing operating costs during the slump should result in fatter profit margins as orders pick up.
Major operations: Uses 20.3 million square feet of office, warehouse and data-center space - nearly 14 million square feet in North America and an additional 6.4 million overseas.
CEO: Jeff Bezos
Major products/services: Sells nearly everything you can think of online, both directly and through third-party sellers; also sells tools to digital entrepreneurs and makes the Kindle e-reader.
Special sauce: The Kindle e-reader marks Amazon's determination to remain a force in media sales, even as more and more content phases from the physical to the virtual world.
Headquarters: Wilsonville, Ore.
Major operations: California, Colorado, Florida, Massachusetts, Montana, Oregon, Pennsylvania; Estonia, France, Sweden, United Kingdom
CEO: Earl Lewis
Major products/services: A wide range of products that use infrared technology, including military-targeting systems, security cameras, rifle scopes, homes-inspection devices and night-vision systems for cars.
Special sauce: Flir focuses on developing new high-end uses for infrared imaging, then pushing them down in price and into broader markets
Major operations: Redbox headquarters and main office of electronic-payments business in suburban Chicago; main offices of money-transfer business in California and London, England
CEO: Paul Davis
Major products/services: DVD-rental and coin-counting machines; electronic payments and money transfers
Special sauce: The Redbox DVD-rental business has turned out to be a lucrative category-killer.
Major operations: Seattle, Everett
CEO: Stephen Welch
Major products/services: Shipbuilding and repair, for both military and commercial vessels.
Special sauce: It's hard to argue with nearly a century of experience.
Decade of performance
The Northwest 76
Low-profile 'Old Economy' companies prove to be major forces in the Northwest economy.
No time to be smug. The next decade is going to be every bit as challenging as the last one, Seattle.
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