General Electric


GE has turned the practice of corporate philanthropy on its head.  While they donate plenty of money (2008 contributions exceeded $237 million in areas such as disaster relief, education, and health care), they are going after the root of the world’s problems through innovation.  As their motto states,  “GE: Imagination at Work.”  Did you know…..

  • Ecomagination is a business initiative to help meet customers’ demand for more energy-efficient products and to drive reliable growth for GE. It reflects GE’s commitment to invest in innovative solutions to environmental challenges, delivering valuable products and services to customers while generating profitable growth for the company. As proof of the effectiveness of GE’s program, the Ecomagination portfolio has grown from 17 products to more than 80 today, with revenues reaching $17 billion in 2008, an increase of 21% over 2007.
  • Healthymagination is GE’s six-year, $6 billion commitment to healthcare innovation that will help deliver better care to more people at lower cost, all while growing the company.

Here are a few example of their innovation:

  • GE Smart Patient Room: GE Global Research has developed next generation technology to help hospitals and staff identify and mitigate patient safety risks. The technology can provide real-time monitoring of safety protocols, such as hand hygiene compliance, clinical rounding adherence and patient falls.
  • More clean power from the wind and sun: In wind, GE is focusing on advanced development to improve wind capture, new controls and software to enhance power reliability, and sophisticated simulation and modeling techniques to optimize the placement of turbines on a wind farm site.  In solar, GE is focused on the entire value chain from cell materials to the solar module systems to enable low-cost solar power.
  • Researchers at GE Global Research are experimenting with phosphor technology to produce fluorescent lights that have high light output, a compact shape, color stability, and reliability.  In addition, they are looking at ways to lower the mercury level found in fluorescents and are focused on recycling efforts for a more environmentally friendly technology.  The goal is to develop fluorescents that save energy, turn on instantly, produce no sound, and be made available in a variety of shapes and sized to fit almost any fixture.
  • For more on their mind-blowing innovation, visit GE Innovation.

In 2009, GE’s total revenue was $157 billion.  Not bad.

“From jet engines to power generation, financial services to water processing, and medical imaging to media content, GE people worldwide are dedicated to turning imaginative ideas into leading products and services that help solve some of the world’s toughest problems.”