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Staples Announces Its 1999 Products of the Year and Recognizes Outstanding Vendors; Canon, Inc. Wins Thomas G. Stemberg Award

FRAMINGHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 11, 2000--Staples Retail and Delivery today announced its 1999 vendor awards, recognizing companies that have distinguished themselves by contributing to Staples' continued success. These companies were honored for outstanding new products, service support, logistics and category development. This is the ninth year Staples has given awards to its vendors.

The announcements were made by Rich Gentry, executive vice president, merchandising and the company's founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Thomas Stemberg, at the company's annual global sales meeting and vendor show in Nashville, Tenn.

"I am very pleased to recognize those vendors who work with us to deliver on our corporate mission: to slash the cost and hassle of running an office," said Gentry. "These award winners represent the very best in companies that provide the highest quality products, the best value, excellent service to our customers, and training and field marketing support to our company."

The Product of the Year Awards are given to companies whose products have had the best sales and expanded their total category. The 1999 winners are:

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- Microsoft Corp, for its Microsoft Office 2000.

- Hewlett-Packard Company, for its OfficeJet R80, an all-in-one

machine that functions as a printer, scanner, copier and fax

machine.

- 3M, for its Scotch(R)Pop-Up tape and dispensers with pre-cut tape

strips.

- Pentel of America, for its innovative line of Milky(TM) pens.

- VTech Communications, for its new 900MHZ telephones.

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The Thomas G. Stemberg Award is the highest single award given to a Staples vendor. This award is given to a company that has been a true partner with Staples, has embraced the company's vision and is committed to making the company first in the industry by driving the business, serving customers and supporting its stores. This year the award went to Canon, Inc. a company that continues to drive core categories and works closely with Staples to design customer-focused retail programs.

Staples recognized four Vendors of the Year who showed exceptional commitment to driving Staples' business through creative programs, timely or special exclusive purchases and marketing support. The winners this year are: Avery Dennison; Eagle OPG, Inc.; Compaq Computer Corporation; and Lexmark.

The Best Category Development Award is given to the company with exceptional commitment to new and innovative product introductions that expanded Staples' business and growth. The winners are: Sanford, for driving sales in the writing instrument category with new, creative products; Siemens Information and Communications Products LLC, for further developing the 2.4 GHZ cordless telephone category with expandable phone systems; Palm, Inc., for continued innovative growth in the category of handheld computers; McAfee Software, a division of Network Associates, for developing software that keeps up with the pace of customer's needs; and Intuit, Inc., for expanding and refining the category of small business tax preparation software and electronic filing capabilities.

The Outstanding Logistics Award was given to the Hewlett Packard Company for its on-time delivery, including substantial reductions in inventory levels and improving inventory turn.

The Service Partnership Award was given to Xerox Corporation for its excellence in customer service and field training for its new digital printer technology. Xerox maintained high standard of service for its copiers in all Staples' copy centers.

The Back to School Category Award was given to both the Bic Corporation for its innovative new products and promotions and Binney & Smith, Inc. for its superior planning, execution and response time.

The Supply Chain Excellence Award is a new category this year and recognizes companies who provide excellent service to stores. This award went to Global Industries, Inc., Bestar, Inc., and Pixie Technology, Inc.

Staples Retail and Delivery is an operating unit of Staples, Inc. (NASDAQ:SPLS), a $9 billion purveyor of business supplies, furniture, technology and services to businesses, from home-based entrepreneurs to Fortune 500 companies and consumers, in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands and Portugal. Headquartered near Boston, Staples invented the concept of office superstores and today is the largest operator of office superstores in the world and a leading business-to-business provider. The company has 48,000 employees who help customers slash the cost and hassle of running their businesses through more than 1,100 retail superstores; an Internet subsidiary, Staples.com, with a portfolio of B2B and B2C operations; two mail order catalogs, under the brands of Staples and subsidiary Quill Corporation; a national accounts contract business. More information about the company is available at http://www.staples.com.

CONTACT: Staples, Inc.

Vicki Hughart, (508) 253-7895

vicki.hughart@staples.com