Booz CEO: Snowden ‘was not a Booz Allen person’

July 31, 2013

McLean-based Booz Allen Hamilton reported a more than 13 percent jump in quarterly profit Wednesday and said its government customers have been supportive since the company’s former employee Edward Snowden acknowledged leaking government secrets.

Booz Allen’s chief executive, Ralph W. Shrader, rebuked Snowden’s actions on Wednesday in his first public remarks on the topic.Shrader said during a conference call that he has met with Booz Allen employees on the matter.

“I told our employees Mr. Snowden was on our payroll for a short period of time, but he was not a Booz Allen person and he did not share our values,” Shrader said. “We cannot and will not let him define us.”

Booz Allen, which is majority-owned by private equity firm Carlyle Group, was thrust into the spotlight after Snowden acknowledged being the source of news reports about National Security Agency data-collection programs.

Shrader said he has “been touched by the words of support from those in the business community and especially from our clients, showing that our long-term clients know the kind of company we are.”

U.S. defense contractor Edward Snowden discusses his motivation behind the NSA leak and why he is revealing himself as the whistleblower behind the major story. Courtesy of Laura Poitras and Glenn Greenwald. (Courtesy of Laura Poitras and Glenn Greenwald)

Booz Allen has said that Snowden was an employee for less than three months and was terminated for violating its code of ethics and company policy.

Shrader said that Booz Allen continues to support the government’s investigation into the matter. In July, the Air Force said it had determined that Booz Allen is not responsible for the disclosure of government secrets by Snowden.

Company executives said that the case has not affected its ability to land government contracts, which constitute 99 percent of the firm’s revenue.

In its first-quarter fiscal 2014 earnings report issued Wednesday, Booz Allen reported that sales for the three-month period that ended June 30 were flat at about $1.4 billion. Profits, however, jumped 13.5 percent, to $70.3 million.

Company executives attributed the growth to better cost management. In particular, they said, the company has tried to limit the number of employees waiting for new work, instead trying to keep most of its staff on billable contracts.

“Even in the midst of some very unprecedented external factors and some very uncertain market conditions . . . we’ve been successful by focusing on those important things that we really can control,” Shrader said.

The company’s stock jumped 8 percent, to more than $20 a share, during afternoon trading. It is up about 48 percent so far this year.

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