One of the most disputable business strategy topics sounds: shall we produce something what is easy and profitable to sell or shall we try to sell anyway something what we have produced? What is primary: production or sales? It seems that the discussion is almost theological: anybody won’t convince the other side of the correctness, thus everyone acts at its own discretion. Of course it’s still possible to reconsider this approach in process.
W.O. Larsen is not the name of a pipe carver. The first Larsen had the first name Ole and he was the owner of a very popular tobacco shop in Copenhagen in the 1960s. So he was rather a tobacconist who decided to expand the range with some pipes. But despite many English tobacconists Ole Larsen didn’t contracted pipe manufactures, he invited Danish pipe carvers: Sixten Ivarsson, Paul Rasmussen, Sven Knudsen and Peter Brakner. And a man with the name Sven Bang (!) was the manager of this shop. It appeared that the gentlemen carved pipes which were very well on sale. Very soon the company equipped own workshop in the cellar and the carvers were formally included into the staff: first of all Svzen Knudsen and Hans Nielsen (Former). Also at different times in 1960-80 Teddie Knudsen, Tonni Nielsen, Jess Chonovitch, Peter Hedegaard – the whole constellation worked in this cellar (and then at the factory).
The next Larsen was called Nils (Ole Larsen’s son). And, seemingly, he was the adherent of another business approach therefore he performed the acquisition of Georg Jensen factory, and with hope for successful sales – he did reorientation to more democratic pipes. That eventually was not the best way: the pipe business was acquired by Stanwell, and the tobacco shop was officially closed on December 31, 2004.
Our today’s freehand pipe was made in 1970s (judging from its style and condition) most likely by Tonni Nielsen. The pipe markings are “W.O.LARSEN \ HANDMADE \ MADE IN DENMARK”. The length is 13.7 cm, bowl’s hight is 5.0 cm. External and internal diameters of the bowl are 3.1 cm and 2.2 cm. The depth is 4.1 cm and this pipe weights 39 gr. Briar, vulcanite stem, no filter.