Paravant was founded in the early 1980s by Rick McNeight as a software company. Later the company developed an award winning rugged handheld computer for the US Army under a Small Business Innovative Research grant. Bill Craven joined the company in 1991. The company grew as it expanded its hardware products and focused on providing the DOD with many miniaturized communications interfaces to enable its rugged PCs to function as controllers and displays for a wide range of weapons systems. Paravant went public in 1996 (NASDAQ:PVAT) and began a series of acquisitions that expanded the company capabilities to include very high speed computing devices for the Intelligence community. The company successfully produced many systems in use today including the F-16 EDNA Systems, the US Army's Blue Force Tracking System (FBCB2) and the UK Army's BOWMAN communications system. In 2002 Paravant was sold to DRS Technologies (NYSE: DRS).
Overwatch Systems is a software company founded in 2003 by Bill Craven, in partnership with Kelso, to provide the Intelligence Community with an ability to correlate and overlay multiple sources of intelligence. The company was made up of six acquired companies which had served all 16 members of the US intelligence community with analysis software tools. By creating an integration software shell and combining the work of these acquired companies, members of the IC could access and inter-relate various multi-Int sources. Overwatch also adopted the Carnegie Mellon Software Institute's approach for code packaging and reuse to enable various approved customers to take advantage of code developed for other IC clients, thus significantly reducing the cost to the IC. Important Overwatch products in use today include Remoteview the most widely used satellite image processing tool, and the low-cost Viper toolset, which enables the tactical Intel user to access and overlay multiple intelligence products. Overwatch was sold in December, 2006 to Textron Corporation (NYSE: TXT), generating a substantial return on investment to Kelso.