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General Electric Company (GE) is an American
multinational Multinational may refer to: * Multinational corporation, a corporate organization operating in multiple countries * Multinational force, a military body from multiple countries * Multinational state, a sovereign state that comprises two or more nat ...
conglomerate Conglomerate or conglomeration may refer to: * Conglomerate (company) * Conglomerate (geology) * Conglomerate (mathematics) In popular culture: * The Conglomerate (American group), a production crew and musical group founded by Busta Rhymes ** Con ...
incorporated in
New York State New York is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper in Colu ...
and headquartered in
Boston Boston (, ), officially the City of Boston, is the capital city, capital and List of municipalities in Massachusetts, most populous city of the Commonwealth (U.S. state), Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the United States and 21st List of Unit ...

Boston
. Until 2021, the company operated through
aviation Aviation is the activities surrounding mechanical flight and the aircraft industry. ''Aircraft'' includes airplane, fixed-wing and helicopter, rotary-wing types, morphable wings, wing-less lifting bodies, as well as aerostat, lighter-than-air ...

aviation
,
power Power typically refers to: * Power (physics) In physics, power is the amount of energy transferred or converted per unit time. In the International System of Units, the unit of power is the watt, equal to one joule per second. In older works, p ...
,
renewable energy Renewable energy is energy that is collected from renewable resource File:Global Vegetation.jpg, Global vegetation A renewable resource, also known as a flow resource, is a natural resource which will replenish to replace the portion resou ...
, digital industry, weapons manufacturing,
locomotives A locomotive or engine is a rail transport Rail transport (also known as train transport) is a means of transferring passengers and goods on wheeled vehicle A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is a man-made ...
, and venture capital and finance, but has since divested from several areas, now primarily consisting of the first four segments.Chesto, Jon.
“GE stock is now trading at $100 but the company’s turnaround efforts still have a ways to go”
Boston Globe (2 Aug 2021).
In 2020, GE ranked among the
Fortune 500 The ''Fortune'' 500 is an annual list compiled and published by ''Fortune Fortune may refer to: General * Fortuna or Fortune, the Roman goddess of luck * Luck, a chance happening, or that which happens beyond a person's controls * Wealth, an a ...
as the 33rd largest firm in the United States by
gross revenue Gross may refer to: Finance *Gross Cash Registers, a defunct UK company with a high profile in the 1970s *Gross (economics), is the total income before deducting expenses Science and measurement *Gross (unit), a counting unit equal to 144 i ...
. In 2011, GE ranked among the Fortune 20 as the 14th most profitable company, but later very severely underperformed the market (by about 75%) as its profitability collapsed. Two employees of GE—
Irving Langmuir Irving Langmuir (; 31 January 1881 – 16 August 1957) was an American chemist, physicist, and engineer. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1932 for his work in surface chemistry. Langmuir's most famous publication is the 1919 a ...

Irving Langmuir
(1932) and
Ivar Giaever Ivar Giaever ( no, Giæver, ; born April 5, 1929) is a Norwegian-American engineer and physicist who shared the Nobel Prize in Physics ) , image = Nobel Prize.png , alt = A golden medallion with an embossed image of a bearded man ...

Ivar Giaever
(1973)—have been awarded the
Nobel Prize The Nobel Prizes ( ; sv, Nobelpriset ; no, Nobelprisen ) are five separate prizes that, according to Alfred Nobel Alfred Bernhard Nobel ( , ; 21 October 1833 – 10 December 1896) was a Swedish chemist, engineer, inventor, busines ...
. On November 9, 2021, the company announced it would divide into three public companies. The new companies will be focused on aviation, healthcare, and energy (renewable energy, power and digital) respectively. The first spinoff of the healthcare division is planned for 2023 and to be followed by the spinoff of the energy division in 2024.


History


Formation

During 1889,
Thomas Edison Thomas Alva Edison (February 11, 1847October 18, 1931) was an American inventor and businessman. He developed many devices in fields such as electric power generation Electricity generation is the process of generating electric power from s ...

Thomas Edison
had business interests in many electricity-related companies, including Edison Lamp Company, a lamp manufacturer in
East Newark, New Jersey East Newark is a borough A borough is an administrative division in various English language, English-speaking countries. In principle, the term ''borough'' designates a self-governing walled town, although in practice, official use of the term ...

East Newark, New Jersey
;
Edison Machine Works The Edison Machine Works was a manufacturing company set up to produce dynamo A dynamo is an electrical generator that creates direct current using a commutator (electric), commutator. Dynamos were the first electrical generators capable of deli ...
, a manufacturer of
dynamo A dynamo is an that creates using a . Dynamos were the first electrical generators capable of delivering power for industry, and the foundation upon which many other later devices were based, including the , the , and the . Today, the simple ...

dynamo
s and large
electric motor
electric motor
s in
Schenectady, New York Schenectady () is a city A city is a large .Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Encyclopedia''. 2nd edition. London: Routledge. It can be de ...
; Bergmann & Company, a manufacturer of electric lighting fixtures, sockets, and other electric lighting devices; and ''Edison Electric Light Company'', the
patent A patent is a type of intellectual property Intellectual property (IP) is a category of property Property is a system of rights that gives people legal control of valuable things, and also refers to the valuable things themselves. Depe ...

patent
-holding company and the financial arm backed by
J. P. Morgan John Pierpont Morgan (April 17, 1837 – March 31, 1913) was an American financier An investor is a person that allocates capital with the expectation of a future financial return (profit) or to gain an advantage (interest). Through this ...
and the
Vanderbilt family The Vanderbilt family is an American family of Dutch Dutch commonly refers to: * Something of, from, or related to the Netherlands * Dutch people () * Dutch language () *Dutch language , spoken in Belgium (also referred as ''flemish'') Dutch ma ...
for Edison's lighting experiments. In 1889, Drexel, Morgan & Co., a company founded by J.P. Morgan and Anthony J. Drexel, financed Edison's research and helped merge those companies under one corporation to form Edison General Electric Company, which was incorporated in New York on April 24, 1889. The new company also acquired Sprague Electric Railway & Motor Company in the same year. The consolidation did not involve all of the companies established by Edison; notably, the
Edison Illuminating Company The Edison Illuminating Company was established by Thomas Edison on December 17, 1880, to construct electrical generating stations, initially in New York City. The company was the prototype for other local illuminating companies that were establishe ...
, which would later become
Consolidated Edison Consolidated Edison, Inc., commonly known as Con Edison (stylized as conEdison) or ConEd, is one of the largest investor-owned Energy company, energy companies in the United States, with approximately $12 billion in annual revenues as of 2017, ...
, was not part of the merger. In 1880, Gerald Waldo Hart formed the American Electric Company of
New Britain, Connecticut New Britain is a city in Hartford County, Connecticut, Hartford County, Connecticut, United States. It is located approximately southwest of Hartford, Connecticut, Hartford. According to 2020 Census, the population of the city is 74,135. Amon ...
, which merged a few years later with
Thomson-Houston Electric Company The Thomson-Houston Electric Company was a manufacturing company which was one of the precursors of the General Electric General Electric Company (GE) is an American Multinational corporation, multinational Conglomerate (company), conglo ...
, led by Charles Coffin. In 1887, Hart left to become superintendent of the Edison Electric Company of
Kansas City, Missouri Kansas City (abbreviated KC or KCMO) is the largest city in Missouri Missouri is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of Stat ...
. General Electric was formed through the 1892 merger of Edison General Electric Company of Schenectady, New York, and Thomson-Houston Electric Company of
Lynn, Massachusetts Lynn is the 8th largest List of municipalities in Massachusetts, municipality in Massachusetts and the largest city in Essex County, Massachusetts, Essex County. Situated on the Atlantic Ocean, north of the Boston city line at Suffolk Downs, ...
, with the support of Drexel, Morgan & Co. Both plants continue to operate under the GE banner to this day. The company was incorporated in New York, with the Schenectady plant used as headquarters for many years thereafter. Around the same time, General Electric's Canadian counterpart,
Canadian General Electric Canadian General Electric (CGE, also known as GE Canada) was a Canadian manufacturer of various electrical products. It was the Canadian counterpart of the American company General Electric General Electric Company (GE) is an American Multi ...
, was formed. In 1893, General Electric bought the business of Rudolf Eickemeyer in
Yonkers, New York Yonkers () is a city in Westchester County, New York Westchester County is located in the U.S. state In the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a co ...
, along with all of its patents and designs. One of the employees was
Charles Proteus Steinmetz Charles Proteus Steinmetz (born Karl August Rudolph Steinmetz, April 9, 1865 – October 26, 1923) was a German-born American mathematician and Electrical engineering, electrical engineer and professor at Union College. He fostered the develo ...

Charles Proteus Steinmetz
. Only recently arrived in the United States, Steinmetz was already publishing in the field of magnetic hysteresis and had earned worldwide professional recognition. Led by Steinmetz, Eickemeyer's firm had developed
transformer A transformer is a passive component that transfers electrical energy from one electrical circuit to another circuit, or multiple Electrical network, circuits. A varying current in any one coil of the transformer produces a varying magnetic flux ...

transformer
s for use in the among many other mechanical and electrical devices. Steinmetz quickly became known as the engineering wizard in GE's engineering community.


Public company

In 1896, General Electric was one of the companies listed on the newly formed
Dow Jones Industrial Average The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), Dow Jones, or simply the Dow (), is a price-weighted measurement stock market index In finance, a stock index, or stock market index, is an Index (economics), index that measures a stock market, or ...

Dow Jones Industrial Average
, where it remained a part of the index for 122 years, though not continuously. In 1911, General Electric absorbed the National Electric Lamp Association (NELA) into its lighting business. GE established its lighting division headquarters at
Nela Park Nela Park is the headquarters of GE Lighting GE Lighting is a division of Savant Systems Inc. headquartered in Nela Park, East Cleveland, Ohio, United States. The company traces its origins to Thomas Edison's work on lighting in the 19th century. ...
in
East Cleveland, Ohio East Cleveland is a city in Cuyahoga County Cuyahoga County ( or ) is located in the northeastern part of the U.S. state of Ohio Ohio is a U.S. state, state in the Midwestern United States, Midwestern region of the United States. Of the ...
. The lighting division has since remained in the same location.


RCA and NBC

Owen D. Young, through GE, founded the
Radio Corporation of America The RCA Corporation was a major American electronics company, which was founded as the Radio Corporation of America in 1919. It was initially a patent trust owned by General Electric General Electric Company (GE) is an American Multinati ...
(RCA) in 1919, after purchasing the
Marconi Wireless Telegraph Company of America The Marconi Wireless Telegraph Company of America (commonly called American Marconi) was incorporated in 1899. It was established as a subsidiary of the British Marconi Company and held the U.S. and Cuban rights to Guglielmo Marconi's radio (then c ...
. He aimed to expand international radio communications. GE used RCA as its retail arm for radio sales. In 1926, RCA co-founded the
National Broadcasting Company The National Broadcasting Company (NBC) is an American American(s) may refer to: * American, something of, from, or related to the United States of America, commonly known as the United States The United States of America (USA), c ...
(NBC), which built two radio broadcasting networks. In 1930, General Electric was charged with antitrust violations and was ordered to divest itself of RCA.


Television

In 1927,
Ernst Alexanderson Ernst Frederick Werner Alexanderson (January 25, 1878 – May 14, 1975) was a Swedish-American electrical engineer, who was a pioneer in radio and television development. He invented the Alexanderson alternator, an early transmitter, radio transm ...
of GE made the first demonstration of television broadcast reception at his General Electric Realty Plot home at 1132 Adams Rd, Schenectady, New York. On January 13, 1928, he made what was said to be the first broadcast to the public in the United States on GE's W2XAD: the pictures were picked up on 1.5 square inch (9.7 square centimeter) screens in the homes of four GE executives. The sound was broadcast on GE's
WGY (AM) WGY (810 kHz The hertz (symbol: Hz) is the unit Unit may refer to: Arts and entertainment * UNIT, a fictional military organization in the science fiction television series ''Doctor Who'' * Unit of action, a discrete piece of action (or bea ...
. Experimental television station W2XAD evolved into the station
WRGB WRGB, virtual and VHF Very high frequency (VHF) is the designation for the range of s (s) from 30 to 300 (MHz), with corresponding wavelengths of ten meters to one meter. Frequencies immediately below VHF are denoted (HF), and the next ...
which, along with WGY and WGFM (now
WRVE WRVE (99.5 MHz The hertz (symbol: Hz) is the derived unit of frequency Frequency is the number of occurrences of a repeating event per unit of time. It is also referred to as temporal frequency, which emphasizes the contrast to spati ...
), was owned and operated by General Electric until 1983. The company also owned television stations such as KOA-TV (now
KCNC-TV KCNC-TV, virtual channel 4 (Ultra high frequency, UHF digital terrestrial television, digital channel 35), is a CBS owned-and-operated station, owned-and-operated television station city of license, licensed to Denver, Denver, Colorado, United ...
) in Denver and WSIX-TV (later WNGE-TV, now WKRN) in Nashville, but like WRGB, General Electric sold off most of its broadcasting holdings, but held on to the Denver television station until in 1986, when General Electric bought out
RCA The RCA Corporation was a major American electronics company, which was founded as the Radio Corporation of America in 1919. It was initially a patent trust owned by General Electric General Electric Company (GE) is an American multinatio ...
and made it into an
owned-and-operated station In the broadcasting industry, an owned-and-operated station (frequently abbreviated as an O&O) usually refers to a television or radio station owned by the network with which it is associated. This distinguishes such a station from an affiliate ...
by
NBC The National Broadcasting Company (NBC) is an American American(s) may refer to: * American, something of, from, or related to the United States of America, commonly known as the United States The United States of America (USA), co ...
. It even stayed on until 1995 when it was transferred to a joint venture between
CBS CBS is an American American(s) may refer to: * American, something of, from, or related to the United States of America, commonly known as the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S ...

CBS
and Group W in a swap deal, alongside
KUTV KUTV, virtual channel In most telecommunications organizations, a virtual channel is a method of remapping the ''program number'' as used in H.222 Program Association Tables and Program Mapping Tables to a channel number that can be entered vi ...
in
Salt Lake City Salt Lake City (often shortened to Salt Lake and abbreviated as SLC) is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are in larger uppercase or c ...

Salt Lake City
for longtime
CBS CBS is an American American(s) may refer to: * American, something of, from, or related to the United States of America, commonly known as the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S ...

CBS
O&O in Philadelphia,
WCAU-TV WCAU, virtual channel 10 ( UHF digital channel 28), is an NBC owned-and-operated television station city of license, licensed to Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. The station is owned by the NBC Owned Television Stati ...
.


Power generation

Led by
Sanford Alexander Moss Sanford Alexander Moss (August 23, 1872 – November 10, 1946) was an American aviation engineer, who was the first to use a turbocharger A turbocharger, colloquially known as a turbo, is a turbine-driven, forced induction device that incr ...
, GE moved into the new field of aircraft turbo superchargers. This technology also led to the development of industrial gas turbine engines used for power production. GE introduced the first set of superchargers during World War I, and continued to develop them during the
interwar period In the history of the 20th century, the Interwar period lasted from 11 November 1918 to 1 September 1939 (20 years, 9 months and 21 days), the end of the First World War World War I, often abbreviated as WWI or WW1, also known as t ...
. Superchargers became indispensable in the years immediately prior to World War II. GE supplied 300,000 turbo superchargers for use in fighter and bomber engines. This work led the U.S. Army Air Corps to select GE to develop the nation's first jet engine during the war. This experience, in turn, made GE a natural selection to develop the Whittle W.1
jet engine A jet engine is a type of reaction engine A reaction engine is an engine or motor that produces thrust Thrust is a described quantitatively by . When a system expels or in one direction, the accelerated mass will cause a force of ...

jet engine
that was demonstrated in the United States in 1941. GE was ranked ninth among United States corporations in the value of wartime production contracts. Although, their early work with Whittle's designs was later handed to
Allison Engine Company The Allison Engine Company was an American aircraft engine An aircraft engine, often referred to as an aero engine, is the power component of an aircraft Air propulsion, propulsion system. Most aircraft engines are either Reciprocating engine, ...
. GE
Aviation Aviation is the activities surrounding mechanical flight and the aircraft industry. ''Aircraft'' includes airplane, fixed-wing and helicopter, rotary-wing types, morphable wings, wing-less lifting bodies, as well as aerostat, lighter-than-air ...
then emerged as one of the world's largest engine manufacturers, bypassing the British company,
Rolls-Royce plc Rolls-Royce Holdings plc is a British Multinational corporation, multinational aerospace and defence company incorporated in February 2011. The company owns Rolls-Royce, a business established in 1904 which today designs, manufactures and dist ...
. Some consumers
boycott A boycott is an act of nonviolent Nonviolence is the personal practice of not causing harm to one's self and others under every condition. It may come from the belief that hurting people, animals and/or the environment is unnecessary to achiev ...

boycott
ed GE light bulbs, refrigerators and other products during the 1980s and 1990s. The purpose of the boycott was to protest against GE's role in
nuclear weapon A nuclear weapon (also known as an atom bomb, atomic bomb, nuclear bomb or nuclear warhead, and colloquially as an A-bomb or nuke) is an explosive device that derives its destructive force from nuclear reaction In nuclear physics Nucl ...
s production. In 2002, GE acquired the wind power assets of Enron during its bankruptcy proceedings.
Enron Wind GE Wind Energy is a branch of GE Renewable Energy, a subsidiary of General Electric. The company manufactures and sells wind turbines to the international market. In 2018, GE was the fourth largest wind turbine manufacturer in the world. History ...
was the only surviving U.S. manufacturer of large wind turbines at the time, and GE increased engineering and supplies for the Wind Division and doubled the annual sales to $1.2 billion in 2003.Fairly, Peter
The Greening of GE
''
IEEE Spectrum ''IEEE Spectrum'' is a magazine edited by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. The IEEE's description of it is: ''IEEE Spectrum'' began publishing in January 1964 as a successor to ''Electrical Engineering''. It contains peer ...
'', July 2005. Retrieved: November 6, 2010.
It acquired
ScanWind ScanWind was a Norway, Norwegian manufacturing company that produced wind turbines. In 2009 Scanwind was bought by General Electric, and became the base for GE Wind Energy in Norway. The company has its head office in Trondheim and production facil ...
in 2009. In 2018, GE Power garnered press attention when a model 7HA gas turbine in Texas was shut down for two months due to the break of a
turbine blade A turbine blade is the individual component which makes up the turbine A turbine ( or ) (from the Greek , ''tyrbē'', or Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structu ...

turbine blade
. This model uses similar blade technology to GE's newest and most efficient model, the 9HA. After the break, GE developed new protective coatings and heat treatment methods. Gas turbines represent a significant portion of GE Power's revenue, and also represent a significant portion of the power generation fleet of several utility companies in the United States.
Chubu Electric , abbreviated as Chuden in Japanese, is a Japanese electric utilities provider for the middle Chūbu region The , Central region, or is a region in the middle of Honshu, Honshū, Japan, Japan's main island. In a wide, classical definition, ...
of Japan and
Électricité de France Électricité de France S.A. (literally ''Electricity of France''), commonly known as EDF, is a French multinational corporation, multinational electric utility company, largely owned by the French state. Headquartered in Paris, with €71.2 bil ...
also had units that were impacted. Initially, GE did not realize the turbine blade issue of the 9FB unit would impact the new HA units.


Computing

GE was one of the eight major computer companies of the 1960s along with
IBM International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) is an American multinational technology company headquartered in Armonk, New York, with operations in over 170 countries. The company began in 1911, founded in Endicott, New York, as the C ...

IBM
,
BurroughsBurroughs may refer to: * Former spelling of boroughs *Burroughs, Georgia, a historically African American community now a neighborhood of Savannah, Georgia * Burroughs Corporation, a maker of adding machines and computers * Burroughs (surname), peo ...
, NCR,
Control Data Corporation Control may refer to: Basic meanings Economics and business * Control (management) Control is a function of management which helps to check errors in order to take corrective actions. This is done to minimize deviation from standards and ensur ...
,
Honeywell Honeywell International Inc. is an American public company, publicly traded, multinational corporation, multinational conglomerate (company), conglomerate corporation headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina. It primarily operates in four are ...

Honeywell
,
RCA The RCA Corporation was a major American electronics company, which was founded as the Radio Corporation of America in 1919. It was initially a patent trust owned by General Electric General Electric Company (GE) is an American multinatio ...
, and
UNIVAC UNIVAC (Universal Automatic Computer) was a line of electronic digital stored-program s starting with the products of the . Later the name was applied to a division of the company and successor organizations. The , built by the Eckert–Mauchly C ...
. GE had a line of general purpose and special purpose computers, including the GE 200, GE 400, and GE 600 series general purpose computers, the GE 4010, GE 4020, and GE 4060 real-time
process control An industrial process control in continuous production processes is a discipline that uses industrial control system#REDIRECT Industrial control system Industrial control system (ICS) is a general term that encompasses several types of control ...
computers, and the
DATANET-30 The DATANET-30 was a computer manufactured by General Electric General Electric Company (GE) is an American Multinational corporation, multinational Conglomerate (company), conglomerate incorporated in New York State and headquartered in Bost ...
and Datanet 355 message switching computers (DATANET-30 and 355 were also used as front end processors for GE mainframe computers). A Datanet 500 computer was designed, but never sold. In 1962, GE started developing its
GECOS General Comprehensive Operating System (GCOS, ; originally GECOS, General Electric Comprehensive Operating Supervisor) is a family of operating systems oriented toward the 36-bit GE/Honeywell mainframe computers. The original version of GCOS was ...
(later renamed GCOS)
operating system An operating system (OS) is system software System software is software designed to provide a platform for other software. Examples of system software include operating systems (OS) like macOS, Linux, Android (operating system), Android and Mi ...

operating system
, originally for
batch processing Computerized batch processing is the running of "jobs that can run without end user interaction, or can be scheduled to run as resources permit." History The term "batch processing" originates in the traditional classification of methods of produc ...
, but later extended to
timesharing In computing Computing is any goal-oriented activity requiring, benefiting from, or creating computing machinery. It includes the study and experimentation of algorithmic processes and development of both computer hardware , hardware and softw ...
and
transaction processing Transaction processing is information processing in computer science Computer science deals with the theoretical foundations of information, algorithms and the architectures of its computation as well as practical techniques for their app ...
. Versions of GCOS are still in use today. From 1964 to 1969, GE and
Bell Laboratories Nokia Bell Labs (formerly named Bell Labs Innovations (1996–2007), AT&T Bell Laboratories (1984–1996) and Bell Telephone Laboratories (1925–1984)) is an American industrial research and scientific development company A company, abbrev ...
(which soon dropped out) joined with
MIT Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is a private land-grant research university A research university is a university A university ( la, universitas, 'a whole') is an educational institution, institution of higher education, hi ...
to develop the
Multics Multics ("Multiplexed Information and Computing Service") is an influential early time-sharing In computing Computing is any goal-oriented activity requiring, benefiting from, or creating computing machinery. It includes the study and experi ...

Multics
operating system on the
GE 645 The GE 645 mainframe computer A mainframe computer, informally called a mainframe or big iron, is a computer used primarily by large organizations for critical applications like bulk data processing for tasks such as census, censuses, industr ...
mainframe computer. The project took longer than expected and was not a major commercial success, but it demonstrated concepts such as single-level storage,
dynamic linking In computing Computing is any goal-oriented activity requiring, benefiting from, or creating computing machinery. It includes the study and experimentation of algorithmic processes and development of both computer hardware , hardware and softwar ...
,
hierarchical file system Hierarchical File System (HFS) is a Proprietary software, proprietary file system developed by Apple Inc. for use in computer systems running Classic Mac OS, Mac OS. Originally designed for use on floppy disk, floppy and hard disks, it can also b ...
, and ring-oriented security. Active development of Multics continued until 1985. GE got into computer manufacturing because in the 1950s they were the largest user of computers outside the
United States federal government The federal government of the United States (U.S. federal government or U.S. government) is the national government of the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or Ameri ...
, aside from being the first business in the world to own a computer. Its major appliance manufacturing plant "
Appliance Park GE Appliances is an American home appliance manufacturer based in Louisville, Kentucky Kentucky ( , ), officially the Commonwealth of Kentucky, is a U.S. state, state in the Upland South region of the United States, bordered by Illinois ...
" was the first non-governmental site to host one. However, in 1970, GE sold its computer division to
Honeywell Honeywell International Inc. is an American public company, publicly traded, multinational corporation, multinational conglomerate (company), conglomerate corporation headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina. It primarily operates in four are ...

Honeywell
, exiting the computer manufacturing industry, though it retained its timesharing operations for some years afterwards. GE was a major provider of computer
time-sharing In computing Computing is any goal-oriented activity requiring, benefiting from, or creating computing machinery. It includes the study and experimentation of algorithmic processes and development of both computer hardware , hardware and softw ...
services, through General Electric Information Services (GEIS, now GXS), offering online computing services that included
GEnie Jinn ( ar, جن, ') – also romanized Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the science, scientific study of language. It encompasses the analysis of every aspect of language, as well as the methods for studying ...

GEnie
. In 2000, when United Technologies Corp. planned to buy Honeywell, GE made a counter-offer that was approved by Honeywell. On July 3, 2001, the
European Union The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe Europe is a which is also recognised as part of , located entirely in the and mostly in the . It comprises the wester ...

European Union
issued a statement that "prohibit the proposed acquisition by General Electric Co. of Honeywell Inc.". The reasons given were it "would create or strengthen dominant positions on several markets and that the remedies proposed by GE were insufficient to resolve the competition concerns resulting from the proposed acquisition of Honeywell". On June 27, 2014, GE partnered with collaborative design company Quirky to announce its connected LED bulb called Link. The Link bulb is designed to communicate with smartphones and tablets using a mobile app called
Wink A wink is a facial expression A facial expression is one or more motions or positions of the muscles beneath the skin Skin is the layer of usually soft, flexible outer tissue covering the body of a vertebrate animal, with three main function ...
.


Acquisitions and divestments

In December 1985, GE reacquired RCA, primarily for the
NBC The National Broadcasting Company (NBC) is an American American(s) may refer to: * American, something of, from, or related to the United States of America, commonly known as the United States The United States of America (USA), co ...
television network (also parent of Telemundo Communications Group) for $6.28 billion; this merger surpassed the Capital Cities/ABC merger that happened earlier that year as the largest non-oil merger in world business history. The remainder was sold to various companies, including Bertelsmann (Bertelsmann acquired RCA Records) and Technicolor SA, Thomson SA, which traces its roots to Thomson-Houston, one of the original components of GE. Also in 1986, Kidder, Peabody & Co., a U.S.-based securities firm, was sold to GE and following heavy losses was sold to PaineWebber in 1994. In 2002, Francisco Partners and Norwest Venture Partners acquired a division of GE called GE Information Systems (GEIS). The new company, named GXS (company), GXS, is based in Gaithersburg, Maryland. GXS is a provider of B2B e-Commerce solutions. GE maintains a minority stake in GXS. Also in 2002, GE Wind Energy was formed when GE bought the wind turbine manufacturing assets of Enron Wind after the Enron scandals.Murphy, Dennis
GE completes Enron Wind acquisition; Launches GE Wind Energy
''Desert Sky Wind Farm'', May 10, 2002. Retrieved: May 1, 2010.
In 2004, GE bought 80% of Vivendi Universal Entertainment, the parent of Universal Pictures from Vivendi. Vivendi bought 20% of NBC forming the company NBCUniversal. GE then owned 80% of NBCUniversal and Vivendi owned 20%. In 2004, GE completed the Corporate spin-off, spin-off of most of its mortgage loan, mortgage and life insurance assets into an independent company, Genworth Financial, based in Richmond, Virginia. Genpact formerly known as GE Capital International Services (GECIS) was established by GE in late 1997 as its captive India-based Business process outsourcing, BPO. GE sold 60% stake in Genpact to General Atlantic and Oak Hill Capital Partners in 2005 and hived off Genpact into an independent business. GE is still a major client to Genpact today, for services in customer service, finance, information technology, and analytics. In May 2007, GE acquired Smiths Aerospace for $4.8 billion. Also in 2007, GE Oil & Gas acquired Vetco Gray for $1.9 billion, followed by the acquisition of Hydril Pressure & Control in 2008 for $1.1 billion. GE Plastics was sold in 2008 to SABIC (Saudi Arabia Basic Industries Corporation). In May 2008, GE announced it was exploring options for divesting the bulk of its consumer and industrial business. On December 3, 2009, it was announced that NBCUniversal would become a joint venture between GE and cable television operator Comcast. Comcast would hold a controlling interest in the company, while GE would retain a 49% stake and would buy out shares owned by Vivendi. Vivendi would sell its 20% stake in NBCUniversal to GE for US$5.8 billion. Vivendi would sell 7.66% of NBCUniversal to GE for US$2 billion if the GE/Comcast deal was not completed by September 2010 and then sell the remaining 12.34% stake of NBCUniversal to GE for US$3.8 billion when the deal was completed or to the public via an Initial public offering, IPO if the deal was not completed. On March 1, 2010, GE announced plans to sell its 20.85% stake in Turkey-based Garanti Bank. In August 2010, GE Healthcare signed a strategic partnership to bring cardiovascular Computed Tomography (CT) technology from start-up Arineta Ltd. of Israel to the hospital market. In October 2010, GE acquired gas engines manufacture Dresser Industries in a $3 billion deal and also bought a $1.6 billion portfolio of retail credit cards from Citigroup Inc. On October 14, 2010, GE announced the acquisition of data migration & SCADA simulation specialists Opal Software. In December 2010, for the second time that year (after the Dresser acquisition), GE bought the oil sector company Wellstream., an oil pipe maker, for 800 million pounds ($1.3 billion). In March 2011, GE announced that it had completed the acquisition of privately held Lineage Power Holdings from The Gores Group. In April 2011, GE announced it had completed its purchase of John Wood plc's Well Support Division for $2.8 billion. In 2011, GE Capital sold its $2 billion Mexican assets to Banco Santander, Santander for $162 million and exit the business in Mexico. Santander additionally assumed the portfolio debts of GE Capital in the country. Following this, GE Capital focused in its core business and shed its non-core assets. In June 2012, CEO and President of GE Jeff Immelt said that the company would invest Indian rupee sign, ₹3 billion to accelerate its businesses in Karnataka. In October 2012, GE acquired $7 billion worth of bank deposits from MetLife, MetLife Inc. On March 19, 2013, Comcast bought GE's shares in NBCU for $16.7 billion, ending the company's longtime stake in television and film media. In April 2013, GE acquired oilfield pump maker Lufkin Industries for $2.98 billion. In April 2014, it was announced that GE was in talks to acquire the global power division of French engineering group Alstom for a figure of around $13 billion. A rival joint bid was submitted in June 2014 by Siemens and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) with Siemens seeking to acquire Alstom's gas turbine business for €3.9 billion, and MHI proposing a joint venture in steam turbines, plus a €3.1 billion cash investment. In June 2014 a formal offer from GE worth $17 billion was agreed by the Alstom board. Part of the transaction involved the French government taking a 20% stake in Alstom to help secure France's energy and transport interests and French jobs. A rival offer from Siemens-Mitsubishi Heavy Industries was rejected. The acquisition was expected to be completed in 2015. In October 2014, GE announced it was considering the sale of its Poland, Polish banking business Bank BPH. Later in 2014, General Electric announced plans to open its global operations center in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Global Operations Center opened in October 2016 as home to GE's multifunctional shared services organization. It supports the company's finance/accounting, human resources, information technology, supply chain, legal and commercial operations, and is one of GE's four multifunctional shared services centers worldwide in Pudong, China; Budapest, Hungary; and Monterrey, Mexico. In April 2015, GE announced its intention to sell off its property portfolio, worth $26.5 billion, to Wells Fargo and The Blackstone Group. It was announced in April 2015 that GE would sell most of its finance unit and return around $90 billion to shareholders as the firm looked to trim down on its holdings and rid itself of its image of a "hybrid" company, working in both banking and manufacturing. In August 2015, GE Capital agreed to sell its Healthcare Financial Services business to Capital One for US$9 billion. The transaction involved US$8.5 billion of loans made to a wide array of sectors including senior housing, hospitals, medical offices, outpatient services, pharmaceuticals and medical devices. Also in August 2015, GE Capital agreed to sell GE Capital Bank's on-line deposit platform to Goldman Sachs. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed, but the sale included US$8 billion of on-line deposits and another US$8 billion of brokered certificates of deposit. The sale was part of GE's strategic plan to exit the U.S. banking sector and to free itself from tightening banking regulations. GE also aimed to shed its status as a "systematically important financial institution". In September 2015, GE Capital agreed to sell its transportation-finance unit to Canada's Bank of Montreal. The unit sold had US$8.7 billion (CA$11.5 billion) of assets, 600 employees and 15 offices in the U.S. and Canada. Exact terms of the sale were not disclosed, but the final price would be based on the value of the assets at closing, plus a premium according to the parties. In October 2015, activist investor Nelson Peltz's fund Trian bought a $2.5 billion stake in the company. In January 2016, Haier acquired GE's appliance division for $5.4 billion. In October 2016, GE Renewable Energy agreed to pay €1.5 billion to Doughty Hanson & Co for LM Wind Power during 2017. At the end of October 2016, it was announced that GE was under negotiations for a deal valued at about $30 billion to combine GE Oil & Gas with Baker Hughes. The transaction would create a publicly traded entity controlled by GE. It was announced that GE Oil & Gas would sell off its water treatment business, GE Water & Process Technologies, as part of its divestment agreement with Baker Hughes. The deal was cleared by the EU in May 2017, and by the United States Department of Justice in June 2017. The merger agreement was approved by shareholders at the end of June 2017. On July 3, 2017, the transaction was completed and Baker Hughes became a GE company and was renamed Bake Hughes, A GE Company (BHGE). In November 2018, GE reduced its stake in Baker Hughes to 50.4%. On October 18, 2019, GE reduced its stake to 36.8% and the company was renamed back to Baker Hughes. In May 2017, GE had signed $15 billion of business deals with Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia is one of GE's largest customers. In September 2017, GE announced the sale of its Industrial Solutions Business to ABB. The deal closed on June 30, 2018.


Fraud allegations and notice of possible SEC civil action

On August 15, 2019, Harry Markopolos, a financial fraud investigator known for his discovery of a Ponzi Scheme run by Bernard Madoff, accused General Electric of being a "bigger fraud than Enron", alleging $38 billion in accounting fraud. GE denied wrongdoing. On October 6, 2020, General Electric reported it received a Wells notice from the Securities and Exchange Commission stating the SEC may take civil action for possible violations of securities laws.


Insufficient reserves for long-term care policies

It is alleged that GE is "hiding" (i.e. under-reserved) $29 billion in losses related to its long-term care business. According to an August 2019 Fitch Ratings report, there are concerns that GE has not set aside enough money to cover its long-term care liabilities. In 2018, a lawsuit (the Bezio case) was filed in New York state court on behalf of participants in GE's 401(k) plan and shareowners alleging violations of Section 11 of the Securities Act of 1933 based on alleged misstatements and omissions related to insurance reserves and performance of GE's business segments. The Kansas Insurance Department (KID) is requiring General Electric to make $14.5 billion of capital contributions for its insurance contracts during the 7-year period ending in 2024. GE reported the total liability related to its insurance contracts increased significantly from 2016 to 2019: :December 31, 2016 $26.1 billion :December 31, 2017 $38.6 billion :December 31, 2018 $35.6 billion :December 31, 2019 $39.6 billion In 2018, GE announced the issuance of the new standard by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) regarding Financial Services - Insurance (Topic 944) will materially affect its financial statements. Mr. Markopolos estimated there will be a $US 10.5 billion charge when the new accounting standard is adopted in the first quarter of 2021.


Anticipated $8 billion loss upon disposition of Baker Hughes

In 2017, GE acquired a 62.5% interest in Baker Hughes (BHGE) when it combined its oil & gas business with Baker Hughes Incorporated. In 2018, GE reduced its interest to 50.4%, resulting in the realization of a $2.1 billion loss. GE is planning to divest its remaining interest and has warned that the divestment will result in an additional loss of $8.4 billion (assuming a BHGE share price of $23.57 per share). In response to the fraud allegations, GE noted the amount of the loss would be $7.4 billion if the divestment occurred on July 26, 2019. Mr. Markopolos noted that BHGE is an asset available for sale and therefore mark-to-market accounting is required. Markopolos noted GE's current ratio was only 0.67. He expressed concerns that GE may file for bankruptcy if there is a recession.


Other

In 2018, the GE Pension Plan reported losses of US$3.3 billion on plan assets. In 2018, General Electric changed the discount rate used to calculate the actuarial liabilities of its pension plans. The rate was increased from 3.64% to 4.34%. Consequently, the reported liability for the underfunded pension plans decreased by $7 billion year-over-year, from $34.2 billion in 2017 to $27.2 billion in 2018. In October 2018, General Electric announced it would "freeze pensions" for about 20,000 salaried U.S. employees. The employees will be moved to a defined-contribution retirement plan in 2021. On March 30, 2020, General Electric factory workers protested to convert jet engine factories to make ventilators during the COVID-19 crisis. In June 2020, GE made an agreement to sell its Lighting business to Savant Systems, Inc., an industry leader in the professional smart home space. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed. In November 2020, General Electric warned it would be cutting jobs waiting for a recovery due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Financial performance


Dividends

In 2018, GE reduced its quarterly dividend from $0.12 to $0.01 per share.


Stock

As a publicly-traded company on the New York Stock Exchange, GE stock was one of the 30 components of the
Dow Jones Industrial Average The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), Dow Jones, or simply the Dow (), is a price-weighted measurement stock market index In finance, a stock index, or stock market index, is an Index (economics), index that measures a stock market, or ...

Dow Jones Industrial Average
from 1907 to 2018, the longest continuous presence of any company on the index, and during this time the only company which was part of the original Dow Jones Industrial Index created in 1896. In August 2000, the company had a market capitalization of $601 billion, and was the most valuable company in the world. On June 26, 2018, the stock was removed from the index and replaced with Walgreens Boots Alliance. In the years leading to its removal, GE was the worst performing stock in the Dow, falling more than 55 percent year on year and more than 25 percent year to date. The company continued to lose value after being removed from the index. File:Linear GE Stock Price Graph 1962-2013.png, Linear GE stock price graph 1962–2013 File:GE Trading Volume Graph.png, GE trading volume graph


Bribery

In July 2010, General Electric was willing to pay $23.4 million to settle an SEC complaint, as GE bribed Iraqi government officials to win contracts under the U.N. oil-for-food program.


Corporate affairs

In 1959, General Electric was accused of promoting the largest illegal cartel in the United States since the adoption of the Sherman Antitrust Act (1890) in order to maintain artificially high prices. In total, 29 companies and 45 executives would be convicted. Subsequent parliamentary inquiries revealed that "white-collar crime" was by far the most costly form of crime for the United States' finances. GE is a multinational conglomerate headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts. However its main offices are located at 30 Rockefeller Plaza at Rockefeller Center in New York City, known now as the Comcast Building. It was formerly known as the GE Building for the prominent GE logo on the roof;
NBC The National Broadcasting Company (NBC) is an American American(s) may refer to: * American, something of, from, or related to the United States of America, commonly known as the United States The United States of America (USA), co ...
's headquarters and main studios are also located in the building. Through its RCA subsidiary, it has been associated with the center since its construction in the 1930s. GE moved its corporate headquarters from the GE Building on Lexington Avenue to Fairfield, Connecticut in 1974. In 2016, GE announced a move to the South Boston Waterfront neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts, partly as a result of an incentive package provide by state and city governments. The first group of workers arrived in the summer of 2016, and the full move will be completed by 2018. Due to poor financial performance and corporate downsizing, GE sold the land it planned to build its new headquarters building on, instead choosing to occupy neighboring leased buildings. GE's tax return is the largest return filed in the United States; the 2005 return was approximately 24,000 pages when printed out, and 237 megabytes when submitted electronically. As of 2011, the company spent more on U.S. lobbying than any other company. In 2005, GE launched its "''Ecomagination''" initiative in an attempt to position itself as a "green" company. GE is one of the biggest players in the wind power industry and is developing environment-friendly products such as hybrid locomotives, desalination and water reuse solutions, and photovoltaic cells. The company "plans to build the largest solar-panel-making factory in the U.S.," and has set goals for its subsidiaries to lower their greenhouse gas emissions. On May 21, 2007, GE announced it would sell its GE Plastics division to petrochemicals manufacturer SABIC for net proceeds of $11.6 billion. The transaction took place on August 31, 2007, and the company name changed to SABIC Innovative Plastics, with Brian Gladden as CEO. In February 2017, GE announced that the company intends to close the Gender pay gap, gender gap by promising to hire and place 20,000 women in technical roles by 2020. The company is also seeking to have a 50:50 male to female Gender equality, gender representation in all entry-level technical programs. In October 2017, GE announced they would be closing research and development centers in Shanghai, Munich and Rio de Janeiro. The company spent $5 billion on R&D in the last year. On February 25, 2019, GE sold its diesel locomotive business to Wabtec.


CEO

, John L. Flannery was replaced by H. Lawrence Culp Jr. as chairman and CEO in a unanimous vote of the GE Board of Directors. * Charles A. Coffin (1913–1922) * Owen D. Young (1922–1939, 1942–1945) * Philip D. Reed (1940–1942, 1945–1958) * Ralph J. Cordiner (1958–1963) * Gerald L. Phillippe (1963–1972) * Fred J. Borch (1967–1972) * Reginald H. Jones (1972–1981) * Jack Welch (1981–2001) * Jeff Immelt (2001–2017) * John L. Flannery (2017–2018) * H. Lawrence Culp Jr. (2018–present)


Corporate recognition and rankings

In 2011, ''Fortune (magazine), Fortune'' ranked GE the sixth-largest firm in the U.S., and the 14th-most profitable. Other rankings for 2011/2012 include the following: * #18 company for leaders (''Fortune'') * #82 green company (''Newsweek'') * #91 most admired company (''Fortune'') * #19 most innovative company (''Fast Company (magazine), Fast Company''). In 2012, GE's brand was valued at $28.8 billion. CEO Jeff Immelt had a set of changes in the presentation of the brand commissioned in 2004, after he took the reins as chairman, to unify the diversified businesses of GE. The changes included a new corporate color palette, small modifications to the GE logo, a new customized font (GE Inspira) and a new slogan, "Imagination at work", composed by David Lucas, to replace the slogan "We Bring Good Things to Life" used since 1979. The standard requires many headlines to be lowercased and adds visual "white space" to documents and advertising. The changes were designed by Wolff Olins and are used on GE's marketing, literature, and website. In 2014, a second typeface family was introduced: GE Sans and Serif by Bold Monday created under art direction by Wolff Olins. , GE had appeared on the
Fortune 500 The ''Fortune'' 500 is an annual list compiled and published by ''Fortune Fortune may refer to: General * Fortuna or Fortune, the Roman goddess of luck * Luck, a chance happening, or that which happens beyond a person's controls * Wealth, an a ...
list for 22 years and held the 11th rank. GE was removed from the
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Dow Jones Industrial Average
on June 28, 2018, after the value had dropped below 1% of the index's weight.


Businesses

GE's primary business divisions are: * GE Additive * GE Aviation * GE Capital * GE Digital * GE Healthcare * GE Power * GE Renewable Energy * GE Research Through these businesses, GE participates in markets that include the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity (e.g. Nuclear reactor technology, nuclear, gas and solar), industrial automation, medical imaging equipment, motors, aircraft jet engines, and aviation services. Through GE Commercial Finance, GE Consumer Finance, GE Equipment Services, and GE Insurance it offers a range of financial services. It has a presence in over 100 countries. General Imaging manufacturers GE digital cameras. Even though the first wave of conglomerates (such as ITT Corporation, Ling-Temco-Vought, Tenneco, etc.) fell by the wayside by the mid-1980s, in the late 1990s, another wave (consisting of Westinghouse Electric (1886), Westinghouse, Tyco International, Tyco, and others) tried and failed to emulate GE's success. GE is planning to set up a silicon carbide chip packaging R&D center in coalition with SUNY Polytechnic Institute in Utica, New York. The project will create 470 jobs with the potential to grow to 820 jobs within 10 years. On September 14, 2015, GE announced the creation of a new unit: GE Digital, which will bring together its software and IT capabilities. The new business unit will be headed by Bill Ruh, who joined GE in 2011 from Cisco Systems and has since worked on GE's software efforts.


Former divisions

GE Industrial was a division providing appliances, lighting and industrial products; factory automation systems; plastics, silicones and quartz products; security and sensors technology, and equipment financing, management and operating services. As of 2007 it had 70,000 employees generating $17.7 billion in revenue. After some major realignments in late 2007, GE Industrial was organized in two main sub businesses: * GE Consumer & Industrial ** GE Appliances, Appliances ** Electrical Distribution ** GE Lighting, Lighting * GE Enterprise Solutions ** Digital Energy ** GE Fanuc Automation, GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms ** GE Security, Security ** GE Sensing, Sensing & Inspection Technologies The former GE Plastics division was sold in August 2007 and is now SABIC (Saudia), SABIC Innovative Plastics. On May 4, 2008, it was announced that GE would auction off its appliances business for an expected sale of $5–8 billion. However, this plan fell through as a result of the recession. The former GE Home & Business Solutions, GE Appliances and Lighting segment was dissolved in 2014 when GE's GE Appliances, appliance division was attempted to be sold to Electrolux for $5.4 billion, but eventually sold it to Haier in June 2016 due to antitrust filing against Electrolux. GE Lighting (consumer lighting) and the newly created Current (company), Current, powered by GE, which deals in commercial LED, solar, EV, and energy storage, became stand-alone businesses within the company, until the sale of the latter to American Industrial Partners in April 2019 The former GE Transportation division merged with Wabtec on February 25, 2019, leaving GE with a 24.9% holding in Wabtec. On July 1, 2020, GE Lighting was acquired by Savant Systems and remains headquartered at
Nela Park Nela Park is the headquarters of GE Lighting GE Lighting is a division of Savant Systems Inc. headquartered in Nela Park, East Cleveland, Ohio, United States. The company traces its origins to Thomas Edison's work on lighting in the 19th century. ...
in
East Cleveland, Ohio East Cleveland is a city in Cuyahoga County Cuyahoga County ( or ) is located in the northeastern part of the U.S. state of Ohio Ohio is a U.S. state, state in the Midwestern United States, Midwestern region of the United States. Of the ...
.


Environmental record


Carbon footprint

General Electric Company reported Total carbon footprint, CO2e emissions (Direct + Indirect) for the twelve months ending 31 December 2020 at 2,080 Kt (-310 /-13% y-o-y). There has been a consistent declining trend in reported emissions since 2016.


Pollution

GE has a history of some of its activities giving rise to large-scale air pollution, air and water pollution. Based on data from 2000, researchers at the Political Economy Research Institute listed the corporation as the fourth-largest corporate producer of air pollution in the United States, with more than 4.4 million pounds per year (2,000 tons) of toxic chemicals released into the air. GE has also been implicated in the creation of toxic waste. According to United States Environmental Protection Agency, EPA documents, only the United States Government,
Honeywell Honeywell International Inc. is an American public company, publicly traded, multinational corporation, multinational conglomerate (company), conglomerate corporation headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina. It primarily operates in four are ...

Honeywell
, and Chevron Corporation are responsible for producing more Superfund toxic waste sites. In 1983, New York State Attorney General Robert Abrams filed suit in the United States District Court for the Northern District of New York to compel GE to pay for the clean-up of what was claimed to be more than 100,000 tons of chemicals dumped from their plant in Waterford, New York. In 1999, the company agreed to pay a $250 million settlement in connection with claims it polluted the Housatonic River (Pittsfield, Massachusetts) and other sites with polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and other hazardous substances. In 2003, acting on concerns that the plan proposed by GE did not "provide for adequate protection of public health and the environment," the United States Environmental Protection Agency issued a unilateral administrative order for the company to "address cleanup at the GE site" in Rome, Georgia, also contaminated with PCBs. The nuclear reactors involved in the 2011 crisis at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, Fukushima I in Japan were GE designs, and the architectural designs were done by Ebasco, formerly owned by GE. Concerns over the design and safety of these reactors were raised as early as 1972, but tsunami danger was not discussed at that time. , the same model nuclear power reactors designed by GE are operating in the US; however, as of May 31, 2019, the controversial Pilgrim Nuclear Generating Station, in Plymouth, Massachusetts, has been shut down and is in the process of decommission.


Pollution of the Hudson River

GE heavily contaminated the Hudson River with Polychlorinated biphenyl, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) between 1947 and 1977. This pollution caused a range of harmful effects to wildlife and people who eat fish from the river or drink the water. In response to the contamination, activists protested in various ways. Musician Pete Seeger founded the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater and the Clearwater Festival to draw attention to the problem. In 1983, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) declared a 200-mile (320 km) stretch of the river, from Hudson Falls to New York City, to be a Superfund site requiring cleanup. This Superfund site is considered to be one of the largest in the nation. Other sources of pollution, including mercury contamination and sewage dumping, have also contributed to problems in the Hudson River watershed.


Pollution of the Housatonic River

From until 1977, GE polluted the Housatonic River with PCB discharges from its plant at Pittsfield, Massachusetts. EPA designated the Pittsfield plant and several miles of the Housatonic to be a Superfund site in 1997, and ordered GE to remediate the site. Aroclor 1254 and Aroclor 1260, made by Monsanto, was the primary contaminant of the pollution. The highest concentrations of PCBs in the Housatonic River are found in Woods Pond in Lenox, Massachusetts, just south of Pittsfield, where they have been measured up to 110 mg/kg in the sediment. About 50% of all the PCBs currently in the river are estimated to be retained in the sediment behind Woods Pond dam. This is estimated to be about of PCBs. Former filled oxbows are also polluted. Waterfowl and fish who live in and around the river contain significant levels of PCBs and can present health risks if consumed.


Environmental initiatives

On June 6, 2011, GE announced that it has licensed solar thermal technology from California-based eSolar for use in power plants that use both solar and natural gas. On May 26, 2011, GE unveiled its EV Solar Carport, a carport that incorporates solar panels on its roof, with electric vehicle charging stations under its cover. In May 2005, GE announced the launch of a program called "Ecomagination", intended, in the words of CEO Jeff Immelt, "to develop tomorrow's solutions such as solar energy, hybrid locomotives, fuel cells, lower-emission aircraft engines, lighter and stronger durable materials, efficient lighting, and water purification technology". The announcement prompted an op-ed piece in ''The New York Times'' to observe that, "while General Electric's increased emphasis on clean technology will probably result in improved products and benefit its bottom line, Mr. Immelt's credibility as a spokesman on national environmental policy is fatally flawed because of his company's intransigence in cleaning up its own toxic legacy." GE has said that it will invest $1.4 billion in clean technology research and development in 2008 as part of its Ecomagination initiative. As of October 2008, the scheme had resulted in 70 green products being brought to market, ranging from halogen lamps to biogas engines. In 2007, GE raised the annual revenue target for its Ecomagination initiative from $20 billion in 2010 to $25 billion following positive market response to its new product lines. In 2010, GE continued to raise its investment by adding $10 billion into Ecomagination over the next five years. GE Energy's renewable energy business has expanded greatly, to keep up with growing U.S. and global demand for clean energy. Since entering the renewable energy industry in 2002, GE has invested more than $850 million in renewable energy commercialization. In August 2008, it acquired Kelman Ltd, a Northern Ireland-based company specializing in advanced monitoring and diagnostics technologies for transformers used in renewable energy generation and announced an expansion of its business in Northern Ireland in May 2010. In 2009, GE's renewable energy initiatives, which include solar power, wind power and GE Jenbacher gas engines using renewable and non-renewable methane-based gases, employ more than 4,900 people globally and have created more than 10,000 supporting jobs. GE Energy and Orion New Zealand (Orion) have announced the implementation of the first phase of a GE network management system to help improve power reliability for customers. GE's ENMAC Distribution Management System is the foundation of Orion's initiative. The system of smart grid technologies will significantly improve the network company's ability to manage big network emergencies and help it to restore power faster when outages occur. In June 2018, GE Volunteers, an internal group of GE Employees, along with Malaysian Nature Society, transplanted more than 270 plants from the Taman Tugu forest reserve so that they may be replanted in the forest trail which is under construction.


Educational initiatives

GE Healthcare is collaborating with The Wayne State University School of Medicine and the Medical University of South Carolina to offer an integrated radiology curriculum during their respective MD Programs led by investigators of the Advanced Diagnostic Ultrasound in micro-gravity study. GE has donated over one million dollars of Logiq E Ultrasound equipment to these two institutions.


Marketing initiatives

Between September 2011 and April 2013, GE ran a content marketing campaign dedicated to telling the stories of "innovators—people who are reshaping the world through act or invention". The initiative included 30 3-minute films from leading documentary film directors (Albert and David Maysles, Albert Maysles, Jessica Yu, Leslie Iwerks, Steve James (producer), Steve James, Alex Gibney, Lixin Fan, Gary Hustwit and others), and a user-generated competition that received over 600 submissions, out of which 20 finalists were chosen. ''Short Films, Big Ideas'' was launched at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival in partnership with Morgan Spurlock, cinelan. Stories included breakthroughs in water treatment, Slingshot (water vapor distillation system), cancer research, energy production, pain management and food access. Each of the 30 films received world premiere screenings at a major international film festival, including the Sundance Film Festival and the Tribeca Film Festival. The winning amateur director film, ''The Cyborg Foundation'', was awarded a prize at the 2013 at Sundance Film Festival. According to GE, the campaign garnered more than 1.5 billion total media impressions, 14 million online views, and was seen in 156 countries. In January 2017, GE signed an estimated $7 million deal with the Boston Celtics to have its corporate logo put on the National Basketball Association, NBA team's jersey.


Political affiliation

In the 1950s, GE sponsored Ronald Reagan's General Electric Theater, TV career and launched him on the lecture circuit. GE has also designed social programs, supported civil rights organizations, and funds minority education programs.


Notable appearances in media

In the early 1950s, Kurt Vonnegut was a writer for GE. A number of his novels and stories (notably ''Cat's Cradle'' and ''Player Piano (novel), Player Piano'') refer to the fictional city of Ilium (Kurt Vonnegut), Ilium, which appears to be loosely based on Schenectady, New York. The Ilium Works is the setting for the short story "Deer in the Works". In 1981, GE won a Clio award for its :30 Soft White Light Bulbs commercial, We Bring Good Things to Life. The slogan "We Bring Good Things to Life" was created by Phil Dusenberry at the ad agency BBDO. GE was the primary focus of a 1991 short subject Academy Award-winning documentary, ''Deadly Deception: General Electric, Nuclear Weapons, and Our Environment'', that juxtaposed GE's "We Bring Good Things To Life" commercials with the true stories of workers and neighbors whose lives have been affected by the company's activities involving nuclear weapons. In 2013, GE received a National Jefferson Awards for Public Service, Jefferson Award for Outstanding Service by a Major Corporation.Jefferson Awards Announces Strategic Alliance with the NFL Player Engagement, Charles Fazzino and IvyConnect, While Celebrating 41 Years of Honoring Service to Others
. Prweb.com. Retrieved on August 16, 2013.


See also

* GE Technology Infrastructure * Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory * List of assets owned by General Electric * Phoebus cartel * Top 100 US Federal Contractors


References


Further reading

* Carlson, W. Bernard. ''Innovation as a Social Process: Elihu Thomson and the Rise of General Electric, 1870–1900'' (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991). * Woodbury, David O. ''Elihu Thomson, Beloved Scientist'' (Boston: Museum of Science, 1944) * Haney, John L. ''The Elihu Thomson Collection'' American Philosophical Society Yearbook 1944. * Hammond, John W. ''Men and Volts: The Story of General Electric'', published 1941, 436 pages. * Mill, John M. ''Men and Volts at War: The Story of General Electric in World War II'', published 1947. * Irmer, Thomas. ''Gerard Swope.'' In Immigrant Entrepreneurship: German-American Business Biographies, 1720 to the Present, vol. 4, edited by Jeffrey Fear. German Historical Institute.


External links

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