Scott Wagner will take over from Blake Irving as CEO of GoDaddy following Irving’s retirement from the role at the end of 2017, according to a Tuesday announcement. Wagner moves over from his current role as president and chief operating officer, while Irving will continue to sit on GoDaddy’s board of directors until mid-2018.
“After more than three decades in technology, I’ve decided it’s time to retire and begin the next phase of my life,” said Irving. “Over the last five years, we’ve assembled a seasoned and diverse leadership team, and expanded our reach around the world, now serving customers in 125 countries with purpose-build products – all while doubling our revenue and profits. GoDaddy’s trajectory is clear and our momentum strong. It is the perfect time to transition leadership to Scott Wagner. I couldn’t be prouder of what the company has accomplished, and I am equally excited about what the company will achieve under Scott’s leadership.”
Wagner spent 13 years at private equity firm KKR, including as partner, and when it invested in GoDaddy in 2011 Wagner served as interim CEO of GoDaddy, before becoming GoDaddy CFO and COO when Irving was appointed. He remained COO on being appointed president in 2016, which expanded his responsibility for go-to-market channels marketing, customer care, international markets, and corporate development, according to the announcement.
“GoDaddy is truly a unique company, and I’m honored to serve as the next CEO,” said Wagner. “GoDaddy has become the starting place for getting an idea online, and we’ve been incredibly successful with nearly 17 million customers around the world. There remains a huge strategic opportunity for GoDaddy – innovating across our product portfolio and technical platform, engaging more frequently with our existing customers, and continuing to serve new geographic markets and customer segments. I look forward to the next wave of GoDaddy’s evolution and to creating a unique, category-creating cloud software company that enables ideas to start and thrive online.”
Irving, who became CEO in 2012, told CNBC that “much the same” growth can be expected for the company under Wagner.
GoDaddy also transformed its image under Irving, shifting away from controversy-courting marketing campaigns that some considered sexist to broaden the company’s customer base. Irving also helped increase diversity among GoDaddy’s workforce, and told CNBC that speaking at the Grace Hopper Conference for women in computing in 2015 was a highlight of his GoDaddy tenure.
GoDaddy recently made headlines when it terminated the domain registration of neo-Nazi website the Daily Stormer for violating its terms of service.