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Defense firm opens office

Photo by Casey Dixon

Photo by Casey Dixon

ALBANY, Ga. -- A company said to be the second largest defense contractor in the world now has a presence in the Good Life City.

BAE Systems held a ribbon-cutting for its Albany office Wednesday morning.

Information provided by the company indicates that BAE Systems is the second largest defense contractor in the world. It supports a range of military and civilian agency customers by providing products for air, land and naval forces, as well as advanced electronics, security, information technology solutions and support services.

In 2009, BAE Systems reported sales of $36.2 billion.

Overall, the company has 107,000 employees within its seven markets spanning the globe. The United States market makes for 53,000 personnel.

"The U.S. market is bigger than the other six markets combined," said Steve Metz, BAE vice president of maritime programs.

Officials with the company say they have been doing business with the military community in Albany for roughly a decade, and that the opening of the office was a strategic move.

"We are looking at a number of opportunities in Albany," said Metz.

Currently, BAE offers technical and logistics support to Marine Corps Logistics Base-Albany, Metz said. In the future the company is looking at consolidating various contracts throughout Marine Corps Logistics Command.

"BAE provides logistics support any place in the world and anywhere in (the product's) life cycle," said Dan Pantaleo, a program manager with BAE Systems.

In addition, there are a number of opportunities out there in the future.

Opening the office also reflects on the company's intention to add more jobs to the area.

"When you open an office, you make a commitment to the community," Metz said. "The number of jobs will depend on the vehicle contracts coming in."

At present, there are roughly a dozen people working out of BAE's Albany office. It is also being utilized by officials at the base.

"(Having the office) allows us to deal with problems in person rather than over the phone," said Tom Traxler, logistics analyst at Marine Corps Logistics Base-Albany. "It will help us interface better with the company. We will be able to get a lot of company problems solved.

"We've been waiting for this office for a long time."

Local officials were also present at Wednesday's ribbon-cutting, including Albany Mayor Willie Adams.

"We are certainly glad BAE Systems had the wisdom to come to Albany, Ga.," he said in his remarks.

BAE has offices throughout Georgia, including Warner Robins, Fayetteville and Kings Bay. The Albany location is at 2410 Westgate Blvd.