General Electric's Unrealistic Goal : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

General Electric, according to this article plans to spend 2/3 of $550 million this year alone or $367 million and the remainder next year. That means they really started spending money in 1998 and plan to finish in 1999. (and I'm Bill Gates' long lost son) Get real! I'm going to check out the SEC filing myself to see if that's correct. It sound too incredible to be true.

GE pins Y2K costs at $550 million By Erich Luening Staff Writer, CNET November 12, 1998, 3:45 p.m. PT Efforts to cleanse its computer systems of the Year 2000 glitch will cost General Electric a hefty $550 million, according to a quarterly report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

One of the largest companies in terms of market capitalization, GE reported it will shell out two-thirds of that estimated total Y2K cost in this year alone, with the remainder expected to be spent in 1999.

Industry observers estimated GE's Y2K budget to be the largest yet reported in Security and Exchange Commission filings.

-- James Chancellor (, November 13, 1998


And, in a sense, this is "panic" -- only at the corporate level, rather than the personal level. Ridiculous spending schedules for huge amounts of dollars, inhumane (but well paid) shedules for computer programmers ("death marches"), etc., etc., are no different then the personal panicking that will take place next year.

-- Jack (, November 13, 1998.

I seem to recall that GE is a major manufacturer of nuclear warheads...can anyone confirm this?

-- Arnie Rimmer (, November 13, 1998.

Well, that's about a billion there - Chevron and GE - from two companies, "going to be spent" - but hasn't been yet - on Y2K.

This is a Dilbert management move big-time - sell now. Throwing money at this particular problem at this point in time, will help only a little. Ever try to water your garden with a fire hose?

-- Robert A. Cook, P.E. (Kennesaw, GA) (, November 13, 1998.

Robert, at least Chevron admits that they won't be ready for Y2K. It will be interesting how many continue to play the "we can do it" game before they finally are forced to "come clean". (For some, this probably will not happen until 12/31/1999!)

-- Jack (, November 13, 1998.

The GE money total suggests a huge equipment buy - PC's, mainframes, severs ---the works. Even at $250/hr, there aren't enough heavy iron geeks to spend it on.

-- R. D..Herring (, November 13, 1998.

Yes, Arnie, GE is heavily involved in nuclear arms production. So is Westinghouse. Lets see...NBC, CBS, that leaves one TV network that is not controlled by the military-industrialists - ABC...and its run by Mickey Mouse!!!

It only gets stranger from here on out guys...

-- a (a@a.a), November 13, 1998.

How much of GE's total revenues is $550 million? These big numbers always need to be put in perspective. If this is 3% of gross revenues, and maybe 40% of IT budget, it isn't unrealistic at all. It's normal, once you realize that GE is a big company.

I'm not sure what to make of the Chevron situation. Of course they won't be finished -- many companies have admitted they are focusing on critical systems, and not even looking at the remainder. Why do we read this and nod, ho-hum, and then everyone jumps up and takes notice when someone mentions the obvious ramification (work will remain to be done after 1/1/00) *in so many words*?

PR people have long since learned to say that this is a very long train, but the important cars will cross the finish line in time. By implication, the unimportant cars won't, but you can't say this. If you do, Gary North and the Knee-Jerkers will cut another hit song, at your expense. You can talk about 2+2 all day, and your stock price will be just fine so long as you *never* breathe the word 'four'.

-- Flint (, November 14, 1998.

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