FRAMINGHAM, Mass., Jan 29, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Staples, Inc. (Nasdaq: SPLS) announced today that it has reached a
global settlement in several retail wage and hour class action lawsuits
related to the alleged misclassification of its assistant store managers
concerning overtime pay.
Under the terms of the global settlement, which is subject to court
approval, the Company has agreed to pay $42 million to resolve the
allegations and avoid further distraction from litigation that has been
ongoing for the past three years. The Company has also agreed to drop
its appeal of a verdict against it last year in New Jersey. The amounts
associated with the previous verdict will be included in the settlement
amount, as will interest and class counsel's attorney fees.
Staples believes that its store labor model, which is based on a
commitment to fair and respectful treatment of its associates, is fully
compliant with applicable state and federal law. The global settlement
involves no admission of wrongdoing in connection with the allegations,
which claimed that assistant store managers were misclassified as exempt
from overtime pay. The settlement amount resolves claims for damages
dating back as far as 2002 in some cases and covers more than 5,500
current and former associates.
Staples, the world's largest office products company, is committed to
making it easy for customers to buy a wide range of office products,
including supplies, technology, furniture, and business services. With
2008 sales of $23 billion and 91,000 associates worldwide, Staples
serves businesses of all sizes and consumers in 27 countries throughout
North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australia. In July 2008,
Staples acquired Corporate Express, one of the world's leading suppliers
of office products to businesses and institutions. Staples invented the
office superstore concept in 1986 and is headquartered outside Boston.
More information about Staples (Nasdaq: SPLS) is available at www.staples.com.
Paul Capelli/Owen Davis