Eclipse is a mercenary corporation, founded by asari commando Jona Sederis. Eclipse are notable for the biotic and tech abilities of their forces, as well as to a smaller extent their use of mechs as disposable infantry. In common with their competitors, Eclipse have a deserved reputation for indifference to the morality or criminality of the tasks they're employed to perform. Many Eclipse units are involved in drug-running, slaving, and murder, and war crimes and the use of prohibited weapons or tactics are not uncommon when Eclipse are hired for large-scale military operations.
Early on, Sederis sought government contracts to establish market share against the better-established Blue Suns. Eclipse thus became involved in the rebellions on Anhur. The agency scored a galactic PR coup by retaking several space stations captured by the Anhur People’s Liberation Army and neutralizing its leaders. A fighter wing hiding in the rings of Sekhmet, in Anhur's star system, ambushed them, and Eclipse suffered heavy initial losses - but they then rallied, destroying two rebel carriers and forcing them to retreat into FTL. This was considered the “high water mark” of the rebellion: at no point after the battle of Sekhmet did the rebels have a victory.
Eclipse also found themselves hailed as heroes when they liberated slave camps on the moons of Sobek. The mercenaries found abysmal conditions, including whole camps that lacked mass effect fields to keep the gravity at habitable levels. The widespread bone loss among the slaves was part of their masters' final degradation — it would cripple them if they ever left for a standard-gravity world. The plight of the slaves soon garnered galactic media attention, and several charities sprang up to pay for their physical therapy and find them gainful employment. The mercenaries, usually reviled, were painted as heroes. Eclipse still retains an office on Sobek's moon Heqet, out of nostalgia as much as any business strategy.
The Reaper War
On Illium, the sizeable contingent of Eclipse troops stationed in Nos Astra - augmented by evacuees from Omega awaiting reassignment - were trapped when the Reapers laid siege to the planet. In a bid to fortify its defenses against Reaper ground offensives, the Nos Varda Provisional Authority, acting in its capacity as wartime government for the planet as a whole, entered into negotiations with Eclipse that resulted in the temporary nationalisation of the corporation. In exchange for a near-total amnesty regarding prior criminal activity (of which Eclipse was accused - and well-known to be guilty of - a considerable amount in pre-war Illium), and lucrative operating concessions in the event of a Reaper retreat and return to peacetime government, Eclipse leaders agreed that their forces would join with the huntress cadres and other defensive units of Illium's surviving cities.
In larger settlements, where a semblance of civilian life was able to continue, Eclipse units were also assigned to aid internal law enforcement forces - sometimes an awkward arrangement, with police now working side by side with Eclipse operatives that had not long ago been criminals themselves. Ironically, Eclipse's pre-war criminal activities served to make them excellent at detecting and eliminating much of the organised crime that attempted to establish itself. Although several incidents resulted from Eclipse personnel using excessive force in pacifying civilian disturbances, authorities looked the other way, so long as order was maintained.
Following the Reaper withdrawal, after a transitional period Eclipse's nationalisation was terminated, and the promised concessions were provided, allowing the once again independent corporation a freedom of operation unknown to their competitors. Although their services had been in considerable demand pre-war, Eclipse had remained dogged by its quasi-criminal reputation; post-war, their participation in the planet's defence effectively washed away all sins. Despite reports of Eclipse resuming its criminal ways elsewhere in the Terminus, and to some extent on Illium itself, the corporation's leadership went to far greater lengths than had previously been the case to maintain a positive public perception, and either mitigate or conceal from view its criminal dealings, while making greater efforts to engage in cooperative ventures with Illium's government and legitimate corporations.
The combination of post-nationalisation concessions and new aura of legitimacy (however well deserved it may or may not be) has given Eclipse the means to dominate the high end of the private military market on Illium and its local trading partners, to the exclusion of any direct competition on its scale.
The HV documentary series "Luminous" aired a few years after the war, following the Corporation’s Firebay Cadre, a close-knit unit of the 66th Company, operating on detached duty out of the Nos Astra base on the rapid-response transport Luminous. The show’s Illium Entertainment Network-affiliated film crew were allowed unprecedented freedom to film the unit, with cameras installed throughout Luminous and the field bases occupied by the cadre, as well as access to personal recorders. The premiere documented the cadre’s actions during the suppression of the Vantage system’s notorious ‘Fragment Riots’, as well as spotlighting the Firebay leader, commando Amla Ura.
The premiere saw record viewing figures, but series director Tion Danse found herself under attack from certain columnists, whose commentaries ranged from accusations of bias and editorial interference, to theories alleging that ‘Luminous’ is a whole-cloth fabrication intended to cover up the truth regarding Eclipse military actions. Danse, in a brief statement before the press, said she had anticipated as much, and was not concerned, especially in light of the show's popularity.
Eclipse owns at least one Hierophant Class Heavy Cruiser, albeit on rotating service to keep the cost of supplying it with Eezo down.