Former Private Equity CEO and President at GE, Carrier and Goodyear
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Dan Smytka is a CEO, Board Director, President, and C-level executive with global expertise in start-ups and growing and leading multibillion-dollar businesses with marquee brands such as General Electric, Carrier, and Goodyear Tire & Rubber across diverse B2B, B2B2C, and B2C segments.
Recently, he served as CEO and Board Director for Zep, Inc., a private equity business, and achieved the successful sale of Zep’s Vehicle Care business unit for an EBITDA multiple well above market norms. Dan’s industry expertise and leadership expand across Fire and Security solutions and SaaS offerings, HVAC equipment and services, building automation controls (BAC), power generation and distribution, consumer appliances, and automotive products and services.
Having lived as an expat for many years abroad leading businesses in Asia and Europe, Dan built a reputation for profitably growing businesses, building high-performance, collaborative executive teams, and executing strategies to deliver sustainable results.
Dan is a focused, inspirational leader who emphasizes client and customer relationships for value creation. Through his disciplined where-to-play and how-to-win framework, he has demonstrated tremendous success in identifying opportunities for revenue, margin, and cash flow growth. Dan is a proven strategic thinker and operator.
- Scaling Revenue Growth – Led a private equity (PE) turnaround of a high-efficacy maintenance and cleaning solution business serving across five industry segments, through strategic priorities, capability investments, and commercial execution ultimately growing revenues by 10% from $685M to $775M and EBITDA by 35% during the pandemic turmoil and building sustaining capabilities in factory infrastructure, products, and talent.
- GM/P&L Management & Accountability – Developed and executed an Asia Pacific five-year strategic plan that involved operationalizing a $1.0B China greenfield factory, scaling a “Winning in China and India” strategy, and acquiring a Japan distribution company, resulting in EBIT growth from $234M to $320M.
- Building Operational and Sourcing Capabilities – Turned around Goodyear’s largest investment of a $1.0B green-field facility and transfer of an existing facility through effective program management and regional government relations, improving new factory ramp-up by six months, transitioning existing facility’s 900 employees and equipment three months earlier and lowering start-up expenses by $70M.
- Leading Through Vision and Strategy – Developed an enterprise-shared vision outlining an organizational purpose for “making the planet safer, cleaner, and more productive” identifying the priorities as culture, safety, quality, customer satisfaction, revenue growth, and profitability and championed transformative strategic moves across the business, culminating with the successful sale of a $95M business unit with a multiple well above market norms.
A native of Detroit, Dan earned a master’s degree in Corporate Finance from the University of Memphis and received his bachelor’s degree with dual majors in Business Economics and Psychology from Creighton University. Dan honorably served his country through active duty in the U.S. Army, achieving the rank of Captain.
Dan is married and has three children. He enjoys sports and remains very active outdoors as an avid hiker, runner, and cyclist. Having lived and worked in Asia Pacific and Europe, Dan and his wife love to travel.
Listen to Dan’s podcast episode, “How to Expand Your Profit Margins During Tough Times“