This Pocomoke City, Maryland, company reached $124 million in annual sales by tackling one of the thorniest security problems associated with the Iraq war when it developed armor for military vehicles. The armor was created to protect soldiers from improvised explosive devices (known as IEDs) and explosively formed penetrators (or EFPs).
Budget through 2015 for armor for military vehicles: $16 billion
Two of USfalcon's employees work out of the Pentagon, linking field telephone networks and satellite communications systems. Like 70 percent of their co-workers, they are veterans of the armed forces. "If you need to train a person on a piece of equipment, the best person to do the training is a person who used that equipment in combat," says Skip Eskridge, a senior vice president at USfalcon. The company, which is based in Morrisville, North Carolina, has more than 40 active contracts, worth $93 million last year, with the Defense Department.
Number of phone calls routed through the Pentagon each day: 200,000
This Walpole, Massachusetts—based company works with the Defense Logistics Agency, as well as the U.S. Army, Navy, and Marine Corps, to source more than 460 parts for older weapons systems. In cases in which components are no longer manufactured -- such as spare parts for the Navy's small fleet of 91 Landing Craft Air Cushions -- 2Is will reverse-engineer them. Contracts with the Defense Department account for roughly 80 percent of the company's $5.3 million in annual revenue.
Cost of military equipment sent to Iraq and Afghanistan that is no longer usable: $17 billion
This consulting company, based in Falls Church, Virginia, provides operational analysis and technology support to the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the Joint Staff, and the Air Force. Among other duties, the company organizes the Air Force Counterproliferation Center's annual conference. It is also doing research related to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Revenue reached $52.2 million in 2008.
Budget for basic defense research in 2009: $1.7 billion
The Pentagon has tapped this Orlando company to develop a secure network over which government employees will be able to text, chat, and attend virtual online classes. ECS, which has increased its head count by 25 percent this year, also develops training simulations for the Army National Guard, the Army, and the Defense Acquisition University. Last year, revenue hit $11.6 million.
Number of e-mails sent each day by the Pentagon's staff: 1 million
This San Antonio—based company specializes in IT support and training. Last year, 90 percent of the company's revenue, which totaled nearly $4 million, came from federal contracts. The work has been somewhat esoteric: One contract involved creating an online course to teach troops how to detect and evaluate airborne and waterborne toxins. Another required Decypher's staff to present research on the disease-carrying properties of cockroaches.
Budget for military medical research in 2009: $194 million
Based in Washington, D.C., where reams of documents are produced each day, 2Pi Solutions is in the business of making sure that sensitive papers are properly destroyed. This shredding business has 26 federal contracts, including two with the Defense Department. 2Pi grossed $9.8 million in 2008.
Number of pages in the Pentagon's annual budget: 400