August 21, 2012, 10:22 AM

ThinkGeek will lose its CEO

Colon Washburn plans to leave the online gadget retailer later this year.

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Colon Washburn will step down as CEO and president of ThinkGeek Inc. on Dec. 31, according to an announcement this week by Geeknet Inc., which owns the electronics and gadgets e-commerce operator. ThinkGeek is No. 175 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide.

Geeknet gave no reason for Washburn’s departure. He was hired just less than a year ago for the ThinkGeek job. His previous experience included a 21-year tenure at Wal-Mart Stores Inc., where his jobs included senior vice president of Sam’s Club, the retailer’s warehouse store subsidiary. He also worked as CEO of produce distributor Fresh America Corp. and a retail consultant for Walgreen Co. Walmart.com is No. 4 in the Top 500, while Walgreens is No. 33.

 “Colon has been instrumental in creating a more efficient inventory management system and achieving substantial costs savings in our warehouse operations while at the same time investing in the research and development that makes ThinkGeek the premier retailer for the global geek community,” says Ken Langone, chairman and CEO of Geeknet.  “He has helped create the foundation for lasting success at ThinkGeek, and the board and management greatly appreciate his contributions and wish him all the best in his future pursuits."

Geeknet says it has started to search for Washburn’s replacement.

"Having accomplished my primary objectives as head of ThinkGeek, I am looking forward to returning to my home to apply my experience to a new challenge,” Washburn says.  “While I have decided to pursue other endeavors, I am committed to remaining focused on serving ThinkGeek through the end of the year and am looking forward to another successful holiday season." 

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