A manufacturer of high quality marine, general aviation, and consumer GPS products since 1990, Garmin is one of the more respected names in the industry. The company's name comes from the fusion of the first names of its two co-founders, Gary Burrell and Min Kao.

Garmin is conveniently incorporated in the Cayman Islands, but practically speaking its headquarters is located in Olathe, Kansas, near Kansas City. It has been listed as GRMN on the NASDAQ since December of 2000. The stock has performed relatively well, and the company continues to remain profitable, unlike many in the tech sector.

Garmin's products tend to be highly innovative, and the company has had several 'firsts' over its lifetime. Some highlights: (from garmin.com)

  • 1993: First portable GPS with moving map (GPS95)
  • 1994: First IFR A-1 non-precision approach certified GPS
  • 1998: First combination GPS and cellular phone (NavTalk)
  • 1998: First all-in-one aviation NAV/COM/GPS/ILS/Moving map. (GNS430)
Garmin has also introduced a new GPS-enabled FRS/GMRS radio, the Rino, which allows "peer-to-peer positioning". This lets you send your position to someone else's Rino, where it will show up on its onscreen map.

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