Every time you board a commercial jetliner to any destination in the world, it is highly likely that you are on an aircraft made by either Boeing, a huge American multinational aerospace corporation, or Airbus, their equally large European counterpart. Together, these two corporations constantly compete for dominance, or an increased market share at least, of the lucrative global aviation and aerospace market.
It all started in March 1910 when a man by the name of William E. Boeing, a former Yale University student and worker in the timber industry, purchased a shipyard in Seattle that he would convert into his first airplane factory. He utilized his knowledge in wooden structure from his previous experience and applied it to the design of aircraft, expertise that proved to be invaluable. The company was not officially renamed “Boeing Airplane Company” until 1917, immediately preceding the US involvement in World War I, in which William Boeing knew that the US Navy would have an urgent need for seaplanes and other military aircraft. After World War I, however, there was a huge surplus of military planes that entered the commercial market, causing many aircraft companies to go out of business as demand plummeted. Boeing, however, survived by differentiating itself and selling such products as dressers, counters, and furniture. Then, in World War II, Boeing experienced exponential growth just like many other aircraft companies. Several decades later, Boeing eventually became the Fortune 500 Company we all know today.
- Ranked 30th on Fortune magazine “Fortune 500” list
- Ranked 95th on “Fortune 500 Global” list
- Ranked 26th on “World’s Most Admired Companies” list
- 2nd largest aerospace and defense contractor behind Lockheed Martin
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