When Ken Dahlberg took over as chairman of Science Applications International Corp. in 2004 and chief executive officer in 2003, the company was still entirely employee-owned with annual revenues of less than $6 billion.
Since his ascension to the company's top jobs -- which were held by his predecessor Robert Beyster for 35 years -- the company has increased its annual revenue to more than $8 billion and completed an initial public offering in October 2006 that yielded $1.7 billion. Employees still own more than 80 percent of the company, however. Dahlberg also led a consolidation of the company's business groups from five to four to better position the company for bigger contracts. The company plans to earn annual revenues between $12 billion and $15 billion by the end of the decade.
SAIC has acquired five companies in the past year, expanding its expertise in special warfare systems, aerospace engineering, logistics, remote sensing technology and ordnance.
In the past year, Dahlberg has steered the company through the icy waters of public and media scrutiny over the outsourcing of Pentagon and other government missions to private contractors, and a March 2007 Vanity Fair exposé that dubbed the company "Washington's $8 Billion Dollar Shadow," and the "largest defense contractor you've never heard of."
That's because SAIC, unlike Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) and Boeing (NYSE: BA), isn't well known by the American public and isn't associated with obvious defense technology like missiles and airplanes. SAIC is one of the brains behind the information technology, multisystem war-gaming simulations, training solutions and network communications that make the missiles and planes and soldiers work.
SAIC is the co-lead systems integrator on the Army's mammoth Future Combat Systems program, a network of manned and unmanned systems and the principal defense contractor for Joint Intelligence Operations Capability-Iraq, which supplies forces with timely intelligence about the locations and vulnerabilities of insurgents. SAIC also has contracts with other federal, state, local and commercial customers, providing research and development, IT management, support services and consulting.
Prior to joining SAIC in 2003, Dahlberg was executive vice president of General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), where he led the company's Information Systems and Technology Group. He was previously executive vice president at Raytheon (NYSE: RTN), and president of the company's subsidiary Raytheon International and Raytheon Systems Co., where he oversaw all defense business units. Dahlberg joined Raytheon as a result of the 1997 merger of the company with Hughes Aircraft Co., which he joined in 1967.
Dahlberg earned a bachelor's and master's degree in electrical engineering from Drexel University and the University of Southern California, respectively.