In the Merrimack Valley: Raytheon Vital to Economy

The recent report issued by the Donahue Institute at UMass Boston, reinforces the view that the defense industry is a critical element of the Merrimack Vally and Commonwealth of Massachusetts economy.  Raytheon is a heavy duty employer in the state – with a workforce over over 13,000 – with many thousands of those are employed here in the Merrimack Valley. The Raytheon presence is also a boon to many ancilliary businesses in the defense industry.

Brian Messenger writes about the Donahue report in his  article in today’s  Eagle-Tribune.  He notes the  Merrimack Valley picture from his interview with a Raytheon spokeman:

Raytheon, which has global headquarters in Waltham and employs more than 13,000 people in Massachusetts — including several thousand in Andover and Tewksbury — also does business with more than 1,750 in-state suppliers, company spokesman Jon Kasle said.

Kasle said Raytheon has bought $1.4 billion in goods and services from those suppliers so far this year.

Such a trickle-down economic effect is significant with a state defense industry that has tripled the value of its contracts to $15.6 billion since 2001 and almost doubled its employment rolls to nearly 116,000 workers, according to a report issued yesterday by Associated Industries of Massachusetts and the University of Massachusetts Donahue Institute.

“The defense industry has done well in recent years in Massachusetts,” said Kasle. “It is important to note that the success goes well beyond Raytheon and other major employers to include a great number of small to mid-size businesses that work in defense in the commonwealth. Small to mid-size businesses have been the lifeblood of the Massachusetts economy. We feel very fortunate to have many of them working with us.”

Read his full article here in the Eagle Tribune.

Rob Gavin of the Globe also writes of this Raytheon-sponsored Donahue Institute study here.