Caterpillar Inc. at a Glance


  • The Caterpillar name has strong résumé recognitions for future job applications
  • Good pay and excellent benefits


  • Location: Those unwilling to move to Peoria, IL-or overseas-will likely miss out on the best opportunities and challenges
  • Job security: While the firm has weathered the recession reasonably well, another downturn could jeopardize revenues, leading to layoffs.

The Bottom Line

  • Employees can fall through the cracks and find it difficult to move up at Caterpillar. However, the benefits of working for this industry leader greatly outweigh any drawbacks.

About Caterpillar Inc.

Whether digging, loading, paving, or moving, Caterpillar does it all. The company is the world's #1 manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, which includes excavators, loaders, and tractors, as well as forestry, paving, and tunneling machinery. It also manufactures diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines, and diesel-electric locomotives. Subsidiary Caterpillar Financial Services offers a slew of financing, leasing, insurance, and warranty products and services for dealers and customers. Caterpillar also offers remanufacturing services in addition to rail-related upgrade, repair, and maintenance services through Progress Rail Services.


Caterpillar is organized into four main operating segments.

Construction Industries (40% of net sales) caters to customers using machinery in infrastructure, forestry, and building construction applications.

Energy and Transportation (almost 40%) makes and sells reciprocating engines, turbines, diesel-electric locomotives, and related parts across sectors serving power generation, industrial, oil and gas, and transportation applications.

Resource Industries (15%) makes and sells machinery with mining, quarry, waste, and material handling applications.

Financial Products accounts for the remainder of revenues and consists of subsidiaries Caterpillar Financial Services Corporation (Cat Financial), Caterpillar Insurance Holdings Inc. (Cat Insurance), and their respective subsidiaries.

Geographic Reach

Caterpillar's construction, mining, and power equipment manufacturing operations are conducted in facilities scattered across the US. It also operates a technical center in Mossville, Illinois. Additionally, the company has marketing and operating locations in the US, Switzerland, Japan, China, Singapore, and Brazil. Parts distribution centers are located in the US, Mexico, Belgium, Russia, China, Singapore, Australia, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, and Brazil.

Caterpillar sells its products and services in North America, Asia/Pacific, Europe, Africa & Middle East (EAME), and Latin America.

Sales and Marketing

Caterpillar machinery is distributed primarily through a worldwide network of dealers, many of which provide sales, rental, service, and aftermarket support. Most are independently owned and operated, though Caterpillar owns and operates its own dealerships in Japan. Within its global dealer network, about 50 are located in the US and about 125 are located outside of the US. This network serves more than 190 countries. Caterpillar engines are sold through the dealer network and to other manufacturers for use in their products.

Caterpillar serves several different customer segments, including those using machinery in mine and quarry applications (Resource Industries); those using machinery in building construction and infrastructure applications (Construction Industries); those using reciprocating engines and turbines in industries serving electric power, industrial, marine, and petroleum applications, as well as those needing the provision of rail services (Energy and Transportation); and retail and dealer customers needing financing, leasing, and insurance for their equipment (Financial Products). At the front end of a purchase, Caterpillar provides financing to its customers; at the back end, it offers support for the purchase and lease of its equipment.

Financial Performance

Caterpillar's revenues have declined the last three years, dipping 18% from $47 billion in 2015 to $38.5 billion in 2016. This was the result of declines across all its segments and geographical regions. The company in 2016 experienced weak end-user demand across most of the industries it serves, especially construction, oil and gas, mining, and rail.

Resource Industries experienced a 26% sales decline in 2016 as mining customers continued to focus on improving productivity and reducing their total capital expenditures. Lower oil prices had a substantial negative impact on its Energy and Transportation operations (22% decline), which supports oil drilling and well servicing. In addition, Construction Industries (12% decline) experienced unfavorable changes in dealer inventories as dealers overall lowered their inventories more significantly in 2016 than in 2015.

Caterpillar also posted its first net loss ($67 million) in at least 10 years in 2016. This was attributed to a goodwill impairment charge of $595 million related to its Resource Industries segment and about $985 million in losses related to a re-measurement of its pension and retirement plans.

Like its revenues, Caterpillar's operating cash flow has declined the last three years, falling from $6.68 billion in 2015 to $5.61 billion in 2016. This was mostly due to the revenue decreases across all its segments coupled with higher payments associated with layoffs.


Caterpillar sets forth multiple goals that it is striving to achieve over the course of the next few years. Its immediate goal is to simplify its cost structure as it suffered a rare net loss during 2016. Through the end of 2015, Caterpillar reduced about 4% of its manufacturing square footage and is planning further closures and consolidation initiatives. By the end of 2016, Caterpillar consolidated or closed more than 30 facilities, reducing manufacturing floor space by about 14%. It also reduced variable manufacturing costs and period costs by $2.3 billion in 2016, which helped to offset lower sales.

In conjunction with these cost-control efforts, Caterpillar is open to investments in digital technologies, data analytics, and automation equipment, which will optimize the efficiency of its machines and engines. It currently boasts about 470,000 connected assets.

Mergers and Acquisitions

In line with its goal of expanding its role as an equipment and services provider, Caterpillar in late 2016 purchased Illinois-based Kemper Valve & Fittings Corp., a manufacturer of high and low pressure flow iron products serving the oil and gas industry. Caterpillar paid about $95 million for Kemper, and the transaction gave it a new product offering within its well service product portfolio. Specifically, it obtained the ability to offer low and high pressure flow iron fluid control products to its oil and gas customers.

In late 2015, Caterpillar acquired RDS Manufacturing, an Oklahoma-based manufacturer of highly engineered turbomachinery parts, primarily for the turbine engine and aerospace markets. The acquisition of RDS is expected to help grow its turbine business and deepen its manufacturing expertise. The purchase price was approximately $95 million.

Months earlier, Caterpillar picked up Rail Product Solutions (RPS) from Amsted Rail Company for $165 million. RPS is a leading North American provider of mission critical track fastening products and integrated fastening systems, and the deal expanded Caterpillar's portfolio of track-related products.

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Caterpillar Inc.

510 Lake Cook Rd Ste 100
Deerfield, IL 60015-4971
Phone: 1 (224) 551-4000
Fax: 1 (309) 675-1768


  • Employer Type: Public
  • Stock Symbol: CAT
  • Stock Exchange: NYSE
  • CEO: D. James Umpleby
  • Group President and CFO: Bradley M. Halverson
  • CEO: D. James Umpleby
  • 2017 Employees: 64,940

Major Office Locations

  • Deerfield, IL

Other Locations

  • Anchorage, AK
  • Albertville, AL
  • Arab, AL
  • Bessemer, AL
  • Boaz, AL
  • Montgomery, AL
  • North Little Rock, AR
  • Green Valley, AZ
  • Irvine, CA
  • Mojave, CA
  • Oakland, CA
  • Ontario, CA
  • Rocklin, CA
  • San Diego, CA
  • Torrance, CA
  • Colorado Springs, CO
  • Denver, CO
  • Paonia, CO
  • Pueblo, CO
  • Washington, DC
  • Jacksonville, FL
  • Lakeland, FL
  • Miami, FL
  • Miami Lakes, FL
  • Miramar, FL
  • Naples, FL
  • Wildwood, FL
  • Athens, GA
  • Atlanta, GA
  • Griffin, GA
  • Lagrange, GA
  • Patterson, GA
  • Thomasville, GA
  • Boise, ID
  • Aurora, IL
  • Carrier Mills, IL
  • Champaign, IL
  • Danvers, IL
  • Decatur, IL
  • Delavan, IL
  • Des Plaines, IL
  • Diamond, IL
  • East Peoria, IL
  • East Saint Louis, IL
  • Galesburg, IL
  • Granite City, IL
  • Joliet, IL
  • Mapleton, IL
  • Mc Cook, IL
  • Montgomery, IL
  • Morton, IL
  • Mossville, IL
  • Naperville, IL
  • Norris City, IL
  • Peoria, IL
  • Pontiac, IL
  • Rochelle, IL
  • Rockdale, IL
  • Springfield, IL
  • Varna, IL
  • Washington, IL
  • Charlestown, IN
  • East Chicago, IN
  • Lafayette, IN
  • Lebanon, IN
  • Muncie, IN
  • Peru, IN
  • Overland Park, KS
  • Parsons, KS
  • Pleasanton, KS
  • Wamego, KS
  • Ashland, KY
  • Corbin, KY
  • Danville, KY
  • Louisville, KY
  • Mayfield, KY
  • Russell, KY
  • Taylor Mill, KY
  • Lafayette, LA
  • New Orleans, LA
  • Palmer, MA
  • Waldorf, MD
  • Ludington, MI
  • Clearwater, MN
  • Fairmont, MN
  • Maple Grove, MN
  • Saint Paul, MN
  • Boonville, MO
  • Chesterfield, MO
  • Independence, MO
  • Kansas City, MO
  • Pomona, MO
  • Booneville, MS
  • Corinth, MS
  • Glendive, MT
  • Laurel, MT
  • Cary, NC
  • Clayton, NC
  • Morganton, NC
  • New Bern, NC
  • Sanford, NC
  • Winston Salem, NC
  • Alliance, NE
  • Lincoln, NE
  • Omaha, NE
  • Sidney, NE
  • Rochelle Park, NJ
  • Upper Saddle River, NJ
  • Santa Fe, NM
  • Henderson, NV
  • Mattituck, NY
  • Tonawanda, NY
  • Canal Winchester, OH
  • Cincinnati, OH
  • Columbus, OH
  • Broken Arrow, OK
  • Tulsa, OK
  • Gouldsboro, PA
  • Houston, PA
  • Mountville, PA
  • New Castle, PA
  • Pittsburgh, PA
  • Reading, PA
  • Sewickley, PA
  • York, PA
  • Jackson, SC
  • Newberry, SC
  • Sumter, SC
  • Aberdeen, SD
  • Dyersburg, TN
  • Johnson City, TN
  • Memphis, TN
  • South Pittsburg, TN
  • Amarillo, TX
  • Deer Park, TX
  • Del Rio, TX
  • Denison, TX
  • Denton, TX
  • Desoto, TX
  • Greenville, TX
  • Houston, TX
  • Irving, TX
  • Mabank, TX
  • Midland, TX
  • San Antonio, TX
  • Seguin, TX
  • Victoria, TX
  • Waco, TX
  • Waskom, TX
  • Huntington, UT
  • Salt Lake City, UT
  • Roanoke, VA
  • Saint Albans, VT
  • Bellevue, WA
  • Spokane, WA
  • Green Bay, WI
  • Hudson, WI
  • Prentice, WI
  • South Milwaukee, WI
  • Oak Hill, WV
  • Cheyenne, WY
  • Douglas, WY
  • Gillette, WY
  • Rock Springs, WY
  • Leederville, Australia
  • Antwerpen, Belgium
  • Braine-L'Alleud, Belgium
  • Brugge, Belgium
  • Brussel, Belgium
  • Bruxelles, Belgium
  • Charleroi, Belgium
  • Grimbergen, Belgium
  • Overijse, Belgium
  • Campo Largo, Brazil
  • Macae, Brazil
  • Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
  • Sao Paulo, Brazil
  • Concord, Canada
  • Saint-Laurent, Canada
  • St. Albert, Canada
  • Surrey, Canada
  • Brøndby, Denmark
  • Esbjerg, Denmark
  • Stoke-On-Trent, England
  • Vantaa, Finland
  • Hagen, Germany
  • Hamburg, Germany
  • Hyderabad, India
  • Mumbai, India
  • Bulandet, Norway
  • Trondheim, Norway
  • Panama City, Panama
  • Singapore, Singapore
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