Eric Smidt

About Eric Smidt

Birth Place: Beverly Hills, California, United States
Residence: Beverly Hills, California, U.S.
Occupation: Chairman & CEO Harbor Freight Tools
Spouse(s): Susan Smidt

Eric Smidt Net Worth

Eric Smidt was born in Beverly Hills, California, United States. Eric Smidt was a teenager when he started Harbor Freight Tools with his father Allan in 1977. He graduated high school through a work study program. In the beginning, Harbor Freight was a mail-order business that sold tools out of a small shop in North Hollywood. Smidt became the president of the company in 1985, and CEO in 1999. It is now a chain store with over 800 locations and 20,000 employees in 47 states. In October 2016, Eric and his wife Susan pledged to give $25 million to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA).
Eric Smidt is a member of Fashion & Retail

💰 Net worth: $2.5 Billion (Updated at 22 June 2018)

Some Eric Smidt images

Famous Quotes:

"I was born here in Los Angeles and wasn't exposed to art as a child. When I joined the LACMA board, I realized what I missed in my youth and the wonderful things that can happen when a public museum opens its doors to the community."

Biography/Timeline

1950

Marking the opening of the 500th Harbor Freight Tools store near Chicago, CEO Eric Smidt announced the contribution of $100,000 and the donation of tools to Chicago Public Schools to support teachers and students in skilled trades learning and internships.

1960

Eric L. Smidt was born in Los Angeles, California in 1960 to Allan Smidt and Dorthy Smidt. His mother had multiple sclerosis and his Father, overwhelmed, sent him to an orphanage when he was nine. Four years later he went to live with an aunt in Tennessee, returning home after two years but moving into his own apartment on his 16th birthday. He graduated from Grant High School in Van Nuys, a public school in Los Angeles. In 1977, as a teenager, Smidt started Harbor Freight Tools with his Father in a small building in North Hollywood, California. Originally known as Harbor Freight & Salvage Co., the company began as a mail-order tool Business. Eric introduced the company's defining innovation of cutting out the middleman and began to obtain tools directly from the factories to the customer.

1985

In 1985, Smidt was named President of the company at the age of 25; he served under that title until 1999 when he became CEO. In 2001, Smidt was listed as one of Ernst & Young's Entrepreneurs of the year.

2008

In 2008, Eric responded to the turbulence in the global economy by implementing a company-wide reinvigoration plan. Eric and his team drove growth in company performance and a culture of continuous improvement. The team drove improvements that led to new products and lower prices for Harbor Freight customers.

2012

Smidt has been a long-time supporter of Children's Hospital Los Angeles, University of Southern California and UCLA. In 2012, he funded a new public high school in Los Angeles known as "Smidt Tech" (also known as Alliance Susan & Eric Smidt Technology High) for Alliance College-Ready Public Schools (an independent non-profit charter school manager).

2013

Smidt is a prominent Los Angeles Democrat, who's hosted fundraiser dinners for both Bill and Hillary Clinton. He is a friend of former Mayor of Los Angeles Antonio Villaraigosa, and he has donated money to help pay down the Mayor's ethics fines. On March 4, 2013, LA Weekly reported that Smidt donated $50,000 to the Coalition for School Reform to elect Kate Anderson and Antonio Sanchez to the LAUSD Board of Education and to re-elect incumbent Monica Garcia. He also contributed $114,300 to a number of Democratic campaigns in 2012.

2015

In 2015, Harbor Freight Tools established a program to fund requests from non-profit organizations in the U.S. to support veterans, police and fire departments, and public education causes.

2016

In 2016, the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans honored Harbor Freight Tools with its Outstanding Corporate Partner Award in recognition of the company's support for homeless veterans.

2018

On February 14, 2018 The Smidt Foundation made a $50 million gift to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center to establish the Smidt Heart Institute. This gift, the largest single donation ever received by Cedars-Sinai, was earmarked to fund cardiovascular disease and cardiology research efforts. "It's important to support outstanding local institutions, and we wants to help amplify Cedars-Sinai's impact on human health and wellbeing here and far beyond Los Angeles. We are humbled to play a role in their long tradition of savings lives and serving our community," said Eric Smidt in a press release.

2019

Under Smidt’s leadership, Harbor Freight Tools has supported excellence in Career Technical Education to benefit teachers and students, providing donations to vocational classrooms via Donors Choose, to the Urban Assembly School for Green Careers in New York City and Domus Academy's Work and Learn Program in Stamford, Connecticut. Additionally, new auto lifts were purchased for CEC Middle College in Denver, Colorado.