Company History Timeline — 1950s

Bill and Dave, with the help of their management team, develop the company’s corporate objectives—the basis of its special management philosophy—and the company embarks upon a path toward globalization by establishing a facility in Boeblingen Germany.

524A Frequency Counter


  • Major advances in microwave instrumentation lead to more comprehensive test results and higher accuracy.


  • Introduction of the high-speed frequency counter (HP 524A) reduces the time required (from about 10 minutes to one or two seconds) to measure high frequencies. One application: radio stations use the HP 524A to accurately set frequencies (e.g. 104.7 FM) to comply with FCC regulations for frequency stability.
  • Net Revenue: $5.5 million; Employees: 215.

Boeblingen Facility


  • First public stock offering: Nov. 6, 1957.
  • Corporate objectives are written to serve as basis for the HP Way, a management style that Agilent will continue to emulate.


  • Net Revenue: $30 million; Employees: 1,778; Products: 373.


  • Following the signing of the Treaty of Rome in 1957, the company establishes its presence outside of California with European Marketing Organization in Geneva, Switzerland, and first manufacturing plant outside of U.S. in Boeblingen, West Germany.
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