WD-40 CEO Garry Ridge leaves his post

  • Push-out Score determined
  • After almost 25 years in the position
  • Praise and thanks for Ridge
  • Steve Brass taking over
  • Ridge will remain as chairman at WD-40
  • Ridge spoke at length and said 162 words

(exechange) — San Diego, California, March 16, 2022 — Garry Ridge, chief executive of WD-40, leaves his position. As announced by WD-40 Co. in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Wednesday, March 16, 2022, Garry O. Ridge leaves his post as chief executive officer at the company known for its iconic spray oil product, after almost 25 years in the role, effective August 31, 2022.

It is the end of an era.

Garry Ridge’s duties as CEO will be taken over by Steven A. (Steve) Brass, currently president and chief operating officer at WD-40 Co.

“Planned leadership transition”

Garry Ridge’s departure from the CEO post is explained as follows. WD-40 said: “[A]s part of a planned leadership transition, Garry Ridge will retire as chief executive officer of WD-40 Company on August 31, 2022.”

Ridge will remain as chairman at WD-40

“Ridge will continue to serve as chairman of the board of directors until the Company’s annual meeting of stockholders on December 13, 2022, when his term expires. Thereafter, he will be bestowed with the honorary title of Chairman Emeritus. Ridge will continue to serve as a strategic advisor to the Company in a consulting capacity until June 30, 2023.  The board of directors intends to nominate Gregory A. Sandfort, who currently serves as the Company’s lead independent director, to serve as board chair, as successor to Ridge,” WD-40 said.


WD-40 said: “On March 16, 2022, WD-40 Company (the “Company”) announced the retirement of Garry O. Ridge as Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”) of the Company, effective as of August 31, 2022, which is the end of the Company’s current fiscal year.”

Share price increase since March 2017

The announcement follows an increase in WD-40 Co.’s share price of 70% since March 2017.

In the position of CEO since 1997

Garry Ridge became CEO of the Company in 1997.

Garry O. Ridge presently serves as CEO and Chair of the Board of Directors.

He joined WD-40 Company in 1987 as managing director, WD-40 Company (Australia) Pty. Limited and he was responsible for Company operations throughout the Pacific and Asia.

Ridge transferred to the corporate office in 1994 as director international operations and was elected vice president – international in 1995.

He was elected to the position of executive vice president/chief operating officer in 1996.

He was elected to the Board of Directors in 1997 and served as president and CEO from 1997 through June 2019.

Prior to joining WD-40 Company Ridge was managing director of Mermax Pacific Pty. Ltd. and held a number of senior management positions with Hawker Pacific Pty. Ltd. (a Hawker Siddeley PLC Group Company) which was a licensee for WD-40® products until 1988.

Push-out Score determined

The Push-out Score™ determined by exechange gauges the pressure surrounding Garry Ridge’s move on a scale of 0 to 10.

exechange reached out to WD-40 and offered the company the opportunity to comment on the score.

Read the full story in the exechange report 12.2022 ($).