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Staples' Most Wonderful Time of the Year Followed by a Real Genius
WESTBOROUGH, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 23, 1998--

    New TV Advertisement Underscores Everyday Low Price
    Roots Through Humor

In a strategy to underscore the company's roots -- everyday low prices -- Staples Inc. today announced a new television advertising campaign designed to attract cost-conscience business customers in a uniquely humorous manner. Called "Genius," the 30-second spot was created by Cliff Freeman and Partners of New York City, and began airing last week and will continue in rotation into mid-November on network television, cable networks and through spot buys.

"This spot reinforces our image as the everyday low cost office supply company while building on our individual brand personality," said Jeanne Lewis, senior vice president of marketing at Staples. "It is just one component of our overall advertising and marketing strategy designed to enhance our message that at Staples, we understand our customers needs and we can help them save both time and money."

The advertisement empathizes with one of Staples' key customers: The person in small and medium businesses who makes purchasing decisions and who is constantly asked to cut costs. "This person is under a lot of pressure, not just from the boss, but from co-workers as well. Think of what it's like to be an office manager when your co-worker wants a $10 pen and your boss wants you to get 10 pens for $1. It's not an easy job. We empathize with them," said Dwight Garland, vice president of advertising at Staples.

The spot follows the entertaining trials and tribulations of company employee, "Johnson," who is successful in meeting his boss' demand of cutting company costs with Staples' everyday low prices.

"Developing original and engaging advertising about saving money isn't easy," said Arthur Bijur, president and executive creative director at Cliff Freeman and Partners. "But by understanding the customer's mindset and developing scenarios that they can relate to helps to breakthrough and create a bond."

Staples Inc. is a $5 billion retailer of office supplies, furniture and technology to consumers and businesses from home-based businesses to Fortune 50 companies in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Germany. Staples, headquartered outside Boston, invented the office superstore concept and today is the largest operator of office superstores in the world. The company, which has grown earnings per share at a 38 percent compound rate over the last four years, has over 32,000 associates serving the business customer through more than 860 office superstores, mail order catalogs and a contract business. More information is available on the company at

    CONTACT: Staples Inc.
             Shannon Lapierre, 508/370-8468