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Staples Celebrates the Entrepreneur in New Advertising Spot; Speaks Directly to SOHO Market
WESTBOROUGH, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 8, 1999--Staples Inc. today begins rotation of a new television advertisement celebrating one of the company's most unique and growing customer populations: the entrepreneur. Called "Wingtip," the 30-second spot was created by Cliff Freeman and Partners of New York City, and will air the weeks of February 9 and February 15 on network television, cable networks and through spot buys.

"Staples was founded by an entrepreneur and retains that spirit. It's an audience we relate to well," said Jeanne Lewis, executive vice president, marketing at Staples. "We've witnessed tremendous growth in the number of people who are starting their own businesses and going it alone. This ad speaks to the SOHO market and the individual enthusiasm of the entrepreneur. We want to remind this group that they're not alone, that we're here to help them run their business, whether they need basic office supplies or a multi-line telephone, their computer system networked, office furniture or copy services."

Approximately one home-based business starts every 11 seconds in the U.S., according to the Michigan Small Business Development Center. And the Small Business Administration attributes nearly 55 percent of the country's innovations, such as the airplane, fiber optic examining equipment, the artificial heart valve, the pacemaker, DNA fingerprinting and the zipper, to small business.

"Similar to the look and feel of our other advertising spots, "Wingtip" empathizes with our target customers in a humorous way and it celebrates those who work hard, persevere and seek out the American dream by starting their own business," said Dwight Garland, vice president of advertising at Staples. "The action takes place in a wide open space, not in a traditional office atmosphere, to help demonstrate how an entrepreneur feels when he or she first decides to make the plunge. It's a feeling of freedom and the ability to conquer the world. These are people that are incredibly self-motivated and individualistic, and we understand that and want to support them in making their dream a reality."

Set on top of a mountain, the spot depicts a young entrepreneur who literally "sheds the shackles of corporate life," and tosses his briefcase, tie, white dress shirt, and eventually his "wingtips" over the side of the mountain. The voice over walks the viewer through the moment, "There is a new breed of business person who has decided to go it alone. You, the entrepreneur.....Staples will always be there for you." As the entrepreneur triumphantly drives away in his sport utility vehicle, which is full of Staples products, the scene switches to two hikers who were climbing up the side of the mountain. One hiker, who is on his back and just regaining consciousness, asks, "What hit me?" The other hiker replies, "Wingtip." Then the spot completes with Staples' tagline, "Want great low prices? Staples, Yeah we've got that."

About Staples

Staples, Inc. is a $7 billion retailer of office supplies, furniture and technology to consumers and business from home based businesses to Fortune 50 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 37,000 employees serving customers through more than 900 office superstores, mail order catalogs, the Internet and a contract business. More information about the company is available at http://www.staples.com.


     CONTACT: Staples, Inc.
              Shannon Lapierre, 508-370-8468
              shannon.lapierre@staples.com