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BACK Integrates With Leading Business-to-Business Purchasing Solutions and E-marketplaces

FRAMINGHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--April 3, 2000--

Nine E-marketplace Technology Providers to Simplify Office Supply Purchasing Through today announced that, its e-commerce site for contract customers, will be available through leading corporate procurement solutions and e-marketplaces. Now, medium-to-large-sized businesses can easily take advantage of's functionality for purchasing office supplies online through the procurement solution of their choice.

"Companies can save a tremendous amount of time and money by consolidating purchasing through a procurement solution or e-marketplace," said Anne-Marie Keane, vice president of business-to-business e-commerce for "Office supplies are one of the first categories companies consider when looking for ways to streamline purchasing. We've made a simple and cost-effective way for companies to purchase office supplies online."

Industry leading business-to-business enabling companies partnering with include: Ariba, Inc.(NASDAQ:ARBA), Commerce One, Inc. (NASDAQ: CMRC), Intelisys Electronic Commerce Inc., Oracle Corporation (NASDAQ: ORCL), RightWorks Corporation, Requisite Technology, Inc., Clarus Corporation (NASDAQ: CLRS), TPN Register, LLC and Trilogy Software, Inc. Collectively these procurement solutions enable nearly all the existing and rapidly emerging e-marketplaces.

Forrester Research predicts that by 2004, business-to-business e-commerce will reach $2.7 trillion and that e-marketplaces will capture 53 percent of these transactions.

webMethods B2B(TM) provides the interface that uses Extensible Mark-up Language (XML) to enable to easily integrate with Web purchasing portals without manual processing or custom re-engineering of legacy, proprietary or Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems. can connect to any trading network or function independently as a trading partner for an efficient, interconnected business world.

About enables customers to decentralize office supply purchasing while centralizing and controlling costs. Contract customers receive customized catalogs with highly competitive pricing and intuitive functionality online either directly through or through the e-procurement application and e-marketplace of their choice. Employees can place orders that are approved by a designated manager, while purchasing agents can use the site to evaluate detailed reports of office supply expenses. The site provides customers access to real-time, live inventory availability, company-specific contract pricing, delivery lead times and shipping status by line item.

About is creating a leading business-to-business electronic marketplace offering a comprehensive solution for all of the office needs of business customers. currently provides an electronic marketplace where small, mid-sized and large businesses can procure office products and business services and obtain business information and expert content. includes the operations of all three of Staples Inc.'s (NASDAQ: SPLS) e-commerce sites:, and

"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 quarter.

CONTACT: Staples Inc.

             Debby Hohler, 508-253-8509
             Schwartz Communications
             Erik Clausen, 781-684-0770