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News Release

Staples, Inc. and Lyreco Group Announce Global Strategic Alliance
FRAMINGHAM, Mass. and MARLY, France, Jun 20, 2001 (BUSINESS WIRE) --

Companies Will Provide Overnight Office Supply Delivery To Major
                   Customers in Eighteen Countries
Staples, Inc. (NASDAQ: SPLS) today signed a strategic alliance with France-based Lyreco Group, to jointly provide contract office supply services to large-volume corporate buyers with a multinational presence. The alliance allows Lyreco to better service international contract customers with a presence in the USA and for Staples to supply customers with offices in Canada, Europe and Asia. It also formalizes a four-year working relationship between the two companies during which time they have served leading international firms such as Pitney Bowes, Dun & Bradstreet and Xerox Corporation.

This alliance brings together the operational synergy and experience of two of the world's largest office supply companies. Through a combination of Sales and Logistic centers spread across three continents, contract customers will be guaranteed a high quality of delivery for office supplies to their business centers worldwide. With both Staples and Lyreco utilizing similar centralized technology and logistics infrastructures, customers will continue to receive the same high-quality service, and enjoy significant time and cost savings regardless of where they are in the world.

"We have enjoyed a successful and profitable working relationship with Staples since 1997," said Eric Bigeard, CEO of Lyreco. "As our customers grew and expanded their organizations beyond Lyreco operating countries, they wanted to keep their contract relationship with Lyreco in their new regions. In order to maintain these important relationships, we are working with Staples to provide the same level of service our customers have come to expect."

"Formalizing our alliance with Lyreco makes perfect business sense," said Ronald L. Sargent, president and chief operating officer for Staples, Inc. "Both our companies wanted an efficient method to serve our growing global customer base. This alliance allows us to better service our customers abroad while bolstering the market position of both Staples and Lyreco. Our corporate customers with a global vision will now have a uniform purchasing and reporting standard as well and the expertise of two trusted, world-class suppliers."

In a statement from John Marquette, purchasing director of Dun & Bradstreet, he said: "Our three year partnership with both Staples and Lyreco has enabled us to consolidate our office supply needs in the US and in Europe. We now look forward to the expanded benefits of this alliance to our other locations in Asia and Canada managed by Lyreco."

    About Staples
Staples Inc. is an $11 billion retailer of office supplies, business services, furniture and technology to consumers and businesses from home-based businesses to Fortune 500 companies in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands and Portugal. 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 50,000 employees serving customers through more than 1,300 office superstores, mail order catalogs, e-commerce and a contract business. More information about the company is available at http://www.staples.com.

    About Lyreco
Operating on a truly International basis, the Lyreco Group of companies offers a complete range of Office Products, and Computer Supplies to a total of over 600,000 customers in 17 countries worldwide. Known as one of the largest "Superdealers", Lyreco is recognised as one of the top listed Contract Office Supplies suppliers in the World, and still growing. This status allows Lyreco to buy most of its products on a global basis, which means better and highly competitive prices passed onto the customer. The Group shares common Sales, Marketing and Logistics procedures, pooling the expertise of all subsidiaries, offering an identical range of services to the customer the World over. More information about the company is available at http://www.lyreco.com.

CONTACT:          Staples Inc.
                  Owen Davis
                  508-253-8468
                  owen.davis@staples.com
                  or
                  Schwartz Communications, Inc.         
                  Doug Russell
                  781-684-0770
                  staples@schwartz-pr.com