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Inventive Minds in Atlanta Want to Know... What Will Be the Next Great Office Product?

ATLANTA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 24, 2004--Staples Invention Quest(TM) was launched on September 25, 2003. One hundred semifinalists were awarded a $100 Staples gift card. Twelve finalists will be selected by February 7, 2004 and will receive a trip for two to New York City for the Invention Quest finals on March 10, 2004. An expert panel of inventors and entrepreneurs will decide who walks away with the $25,000 grand prize. Eleven finalists will receive a $5,000 cash prize. Additionally, winners will receive royalties if their ideas are created and sold exclusively by Staples on Staples.com(R) and in its more than 1,100 stores across the United States.

About Staples, Inc.

Staples, Inc. is headquartered outside of Boston and sells a wide range of office products, including supplies, technology, furniture, and business services. With 2002 sales of $11.6 billion, Staples is committed to make buying office products easy. Nearly 58,000 associates serve consumers and businesses of all sizes -- from home-based businesses to Fortune 500 companies in the US, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Staples invented the office superstore concept and today, with approximately 1,500 office superstores, is the largest operator of office superstores in the world. Staples also serves its customers through its mail order catalog, e-commerce and contract businesses. More information is available at http://www.staples.com.

MULTIMEDIA AVAILABLE: http://www.businesswire.com/cgi-bin/mmg.cgi?eid=4557220

CONTACT: Staples
Deborah Hohler, 508-253-8509
Deborah.Hohler@staples.com
or
MS&L
Meara Murphy, 617-937-2574
Meara.Murphy@mslpr.com

SOURCE: Staples