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Costco CEO Craig Jelinek to Step Down

Another company veteran, Ron Vachris, to take reins Jan. 1

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PHOTOGRAPHY: Thomas De Wever/iStock.com

Costco Wholesale Corp. (Issaquah, Wash.) announced that Craig Jelinek has confirmed his intention to step down as CEO, effective Jan. 1, 2024. Jelinek has helmed the perennially profitable and widely admired membership warehouse club since 2012 and has worked for it since 1984.

The retailer’s board has elected Ron Vachris, President and COO since February 2022, to succeed Jelinek. Vachris is a Costco veteran with 40-plus years of service to the company, starting as a forklift driver and subsequently serving in every major role related to Costco’s business operations and merchandising activities.

“Costco has a very strong culture and a deep bench of management talent,” said Jelinek. “I have total confidence in Ron and feel that we are fortunate as a company to have an executive of his caliber to succeed me.”

Costco currently operates 861 warehouses, including 591 in the United States and Puerto Rico, 107 in Canada, 40 in Mexico, 33 in Japan, 29 in the United Kingdom, 18 in Korea, 15 in Australia, 14 in Taiwan, five in China, four in Spain, two in France, and one each in Iceland, New Zealand and Sweden.

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