A big year for Costco

Jan 25, 2024
Written by WR Communications


In 2023, Costco Wholesale Corporation experienced a monumental year marked by significant growth and strategic developments. The company’s annual meeting, conducted virtually and led by new CEO Ron Vachris, revealed impressive fiscal achievements and ambitious plans.

Vachris, who began his career at Costco as a forklift driver four decades ago, succeeded Craig Jelinek as CEO on January 1. Under his leadership, Costco reported remarkable sales figures and membership growth. The company sold nearly 200 million of its famous hot dog-and-soda combos, falling just short of its 200 million target but showing a substantial increase from the 156 million sold the previous year. Vachris expressed confidence in reaching the 200 million mark in the current fiscal year.

Another highlight was the sale of 137 million $4.99 rotisserie chickens, a 20 million increase from 2022. This surge in sales contributed to the strong performance of Costco’s service deli. The company’s membership base also saw significant growth, with 71 million paid household members, a 7.9% increase, and nearly 128 million cardholders, up 7.6%. Notably, membership renewals reached a historic high of 90.5%.

Financially, Costco collected $4.7 billion in membership fees, an 8% increase from the previous year. In part, the growth was attributed to the opening of 23 new warehouses, with plans to open 31 more in the 2024 fiscal year. As of the meeting, 11 new locations had already been launched, bringing the total to 872 warehouses globally.

Costco’s net sales reached $237.7 billion, a 7% increase driven by sales at newly opened warehouses. The company is also testing a new system for improving the checkout experience, involving membership card scans at select stores. This initiative aims to streamline the process and prevent nonmembers from using borrowed cards.

Overall, Costco’s 2023 fiscal year showcased robust growth, innovative strategies, and a strong commitment to enhancing customer experience and operational efficiency.


Return to newsletter