|Staples Inc. Announces Plans to Create Tracking Stock for E-Commerce Unit and Names Jeanne M. Lewis President of Division|
| Business/Technology Editors|
FRAMINGHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sept. 15, 1999--Staples Inc. (NASDAQ:SPLS) today announced its board of directors has approved plans to create a new class of common stock -- Staples.com Stock -- that will track the performance of the company's e-commerce business. Creating a tracking stock will allow Staples to aggressively pursue electronic commerce and become the preeminent office supply seller to small businesses on the Internet.
The plans to create a tracking stock are subject to shareholder
approval. The company expects to file a proxy statement with the
Securities and Exchange Commission regarding its plans within the next
few weeks, and has no immediate plans for an initial public offering
of Staples.com Stock.
"Staples is committed to becoming the dominant supplier of office
supplies and services across all our sales channels, including the
Internet, our retail stores, catalog operations and contract
business," said Staples Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Thomas G.
Stemberg. "A dedicated, well-resourced e-commerce unit - along with
the tremendous strength of Staples' existing franchise - will allow us
to more effectively deploy the talent and focus necessary to dominate
the $250 billion office supply market."
Stemberg noted that as part of the plan to put Staples' best
talent behind the e-commerce opportunity, the company has promoted
Jeanne M. Lewis, formerly executive vice president of marketing, to
the new position of president for Staples.com and promoted Jeffrey L.
Levitan, formerly senior vice president for Staples.com, to executive
vice president of strategy and development for Staples.com.
"Jeanne brings extensive company expertise, as well as a superb
track record in building the Staples brand across all our sales
channels. Jeff has done an outstanding job of establishing our
Internet presence and will be responsible for expanding its business
to new areas. Leaders such as Jeanne and Jeff will give Staples.com a
distinct competitive advantage," said Stemberg.
The Staples.com tracking stock will include all three of the
company's e-commerce businesses: Staples.com, Quillcorp.com and
StaplesLink.com (formerly Staples Network Advantage Plus, or
S.N.A.P.), each specifically designed to serve a target customer base.
--Staples.com is the company's public Web site that serves the
home office and small business customer via the Internet. The site was
launched in November 1998.
--Quillcorp.com is a public Web site operated by Quill, which was
acquired by Staples in May 1998, and serves a small- to medium-sized
--StaplesLink.com serves Staples' medium- to large-sized business
customers who purchase office supplies on a contract basis via the
The tracking securities may not be sold, nor may offers to buy be
accepted prior to the time a registration statement filed with the
Securities and Exchange Commission becomes effective. This press
release shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of
an offer to buy, which may only be made by prospectus, nor shall there
be any sale of these securities in any state in which such offer,
solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or
qualification under the securities laws of any such state.
Staples Inc. is a $7 billion retailer of office supplies,
furniture and technology to consumers and businesses from home-based
businesses to Fortune 500 companies in the United States, Canada, the
United Kingdom and Germany. Headquartered outside Boston, Staples
invented the office superstore concept and today is the largest
operator of office superstores in the world. The company has over
46,000 employees serving customers through more than 1,000 office
superstores, mail order catalogs, e-commerce and a contract business.
More information about the company is available at
"Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation
Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding
Staples Inc.'s business which are not historical facts are
"forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. For
a discussion of such risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual
results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking
statements, see "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report or Form
10-Q for the most recently ended fiscal quarter.
--30--bh/bos* CONTACT: Staples, Inc. Shannon Lapierre, 508/253-8468 Public Relations Manager firstname.lastname@example.org or Catherine Woods, 508/253-7342 Investor Relations Manager email@example.com KEYWORD: MASSACHUSETTS INDUSTRY KEYWORD: COMED COMPUTERS/ELECTRONICS RETAIL