How oil became the main and global business and what does the trade in shells have to do with it. Part IV



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      Alas, Samuel did not have time to come to a merger with Royal Dutch with such a fat bonus, which could have been a contract with one of the largest military fleets in the world, and in the new company, which became known as Royal Dutch Shell, he got "only" 40% of the shares and the title of chairman of the board, and the director of the newly formed company was a Dutchman (he will later take British citizenship) Henry Deterding.



                    Henry Deterding - head of the newly formed ROYAL DUTCH SHELL company


   This does not mean, of course, that Samuel remains out of business – thanks to his connections, for example, Royal Dutch Shell will be the very company that (in 1910) will begin the development of Grozny oil. Actually, Samuel's connections, resourcefulness and charm will open the way for a new company to a lot of developments.

And Samuel will not leave the topic of fuel oil for the Navy, and in the end he will "finish it off" when the young Winston Churchill becomes the lord of the Admiralty – this will happen in 1912, and, following England, all other military, and in parallel with them, civilian ships will be converted from coal fuel to fuel oil.

Marcus Samuel generally had a good nose for novelties – he foresaw the development of aviation and saw in it a new and very large consumer of petroleum products, for aircraft designers he specifically advertised aviation kerosene, which, as a result, became (and remains) the best fuel for aircraft. As in all other cases in life, Samuel did not wait for the aviation industry to say "yes" to him - he simply began to build aviation kerosene storage facilities near airfields, which predetermined the success of deliveries. In the early 20s of the twentieth century, more than half of the world's aircraft were refueled with Shell kerosene, and the first flight across the Atlantic was carried out on Shell fuel.


The pride of the British Navy, the battleship Dreadnought, built in 1906. One of the first will be equipped with a diesel engine.


   However, the new director of Royal Dutch Shell, Henry Deterding, a figure, let's say, not too unambiguous and even in a certain sense extravagant, turned out to be an excellent businessman, through his efforts the company really expanded the geography of its activities, surpassing all others – they opened production in Venezuela, Egypt, Romania, their oil storage facilities were located in almost every port on the planet, the value of Shell itself has grown since its inception in 1897 at $ 1.8 million to $26 million over the next 30 years, and Royal Dutch Shell has become number one in the oil market quite by deed (note, that after the Second World War, largely as a result of the promiscuity and carelessness of Henry Deterding, who supplied Hitler with petroleum products, whose admirer turned out to be a Dutchman, the company would lose its first place in the world, but he will not cease to be one of the leading players).

As for Marcus Samuel, in the 20s, after his fiftieth birthday, he begins to retire, taking up more public functions, such as participating in the ceremonies of the London City Hall, and leading a secular life (in 1921 he became a baron, and in 1925 received the title of first Viscount Birsted).

Marcus Samuel will die in London in 1927, the dubious "happiness" from fairy tales – "to live long and die in one day" - is about him and his wife Fanny, whom he will outlive by two hours.

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