Staples and Office Depot in talks to transfer contracts

The Wall Street Journal has reported Office Depot Inc (ODP.O) and Staples Inc (SPLS.O) have agreed to merge and are offering to transfer corporate contracts worth $600 million to the wholesaler Essendant Inc (ESND.O) to satisfy the U.S antitrust concerns.

The $6.3 billion acquisition has come under scrutiny under the Federal Trade Commission, with concerns it would leave few competitive options for large corporations that buy office supplies in bulk.

Under the transfer, the new back-end supplier would be Essendant giving the company a bigger footprint in the market.

The merger of two of the largest office supply retailers is being challenged by the American Postal Workers Union and the American Antitrust Institute, delaying the closing of the deal until early 2016.

Following the release of the Wall Street Journal report, Staple’s stock rose but closed at $12.60, down 18 cents whilst Office Depot stock closed up 5 cents.


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Safiya focuses on business and political stories for UK Investor Magazine. Her interests include international development, travel and politics.