Lehman Brothers Collection - Contemporary Business Archives

Harvard Business School Baker Library Historical Collections

Lehman Brothers Collection

Twentieth-Century Business Archives

Baker Oil Tools, Inc. - Lehman Brothers Collection

Baker Oil Tools, Inc.

List of Deals

Baker Oil Tools grew out of a single invention, the Baker well casing shoe, developed in 1907 by Reuben C. "Carl" Baker. This device revolutionized cable tool drilling and ensured the uninterrupted flow of oil through a well. Baker patented his invention in 1907 and in 1913 he incorporated the Baker Casing Shoe Company to protect this patent as well as future patents on products that soon became industry standards. In 1923 Baker introduced the float shoe to further improve the casing cementing process.

Baker changed the name of the company to Baker Oil Tools in 1928, a name it would carry for forty years. In 1929 the company also began paying a dividend. The Great Depression affected the company badly, causing it to lay off a large number of workers, but the 1930s and 1940s were years of solid growth. It introduced new products such as the Model K float retainer in 1932 for high-pressure cementing.

In 1942 it developed the Model D permanent packer, which enabled multiple completions. The company also opened offices in many states, including Texas, Illinois, Wyoming, Missouri, and Louisiana. During World War II, Baker retooled its operations to produce gun-recoil mechanisms. After the war the company continued to prosper. In the ten years after 1948, Baker opened fifty new offices in sixteen states.

Carl Baker retired at age eighty-five in 1956 and died shortly afterwards. He was succeeded by Theodore Sutter, an executive who joined the company in the early 1920s. In 1958 the company earned $1.8 million on revenues of $21.4 million and employed approximately 1,500 people in seventy-four offices throughout the United States, Canada, and Venezuela.

Harvard Business School Harvard Business School Baker Library Histrorical Collections