Perhaps no other oil and gas-related company offers a history steeped in Hollywood glamor, unfathomable riches, intrigue, drama, and reinvention than Baker Hughes. What yesteryear created with the partnership of Baker Oil Tool Company and Hughes Tool Company (which ultimately would be led by eccentric billionaire Howard Hughes), is stuff of legend. But one thing is clear. Among the world’s three oilfield services giants, Houston-based Baker Hughes has never stopped reinventing itself. And it’s paying off.
Baker Hughes Company is an international industrial service company and one of the world’s largest oil field services companies. The company provides the oil and gas industry with products and services for oil drilling, formation evaluation, completion, production and reservoir consulting.
Fact is the oil patch has been less than kind to oilfield services companies over the last few years. Contraction in the industry and consolidation through “mergers of equals” have been a battle cry from Wall Street after stinging butt-whips in the E&P sector. The number of rigs to drill-baby-drill peaked in 2014 from 1,609 collapsing two years later to 325. Those numbers have slowly crawled up to 676 as of Jan. 24.
Two of the three oilfield services titans—Houston-based Halliburton and Schlumberger—took a serious belt-beating last year writing down more than $10 billion in losses. Baker Hughes, on the other hand, ended 2019 in the black. This, after waving bye-bye to its hydraulic fracturing products and services and putting its money on manufacturing turbines and LNG equipment, and developing digital oilfield and “clean energy” technologies for exploration and production both on- and offshore. Coming off its separation from GE, Baker Hughes now touts a new brand and a new descriptor as the “first and only fullstream energy services company.” Howard would be pleased.
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