GEO Drilling Fluids, Inc. began business as “Western Mud” in 1968. During the next ten years it grew to be the dominant independent mud company in California. During the late 1970’s a NYSE traded company known as Peabody International began purchasing various oil field service companies. This included the purchase of Calada Materials a California drilling fluid company since 1950 and later the purchase of Western Mud. In 1981 Peabody spun off its oilfield service companies. These companies were grouped under a holding company that was listed on the NYSE as GEO International, Inc. As the market softened in the late 1980s, many of the divisions were sold off and GEO International entered Chapter 11 proceedings in 1992 with GEO Western Drilling Fluids as the only survivor.
In 1996, the management of GEO Drilling Fluids completed a purchase of the Division from GEO International and set up GEO Drilling Fluids as a wholly-owned private entity. Most of the original owners and many of the original engineers and staff are still a part of the company.