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About Staples Inc. :
Staples Inc. (NASDAQ: SPLS) is a large office supply chain store, with over 2,000 stores worldwide in 26 countries. Based in Framingham, Massachusetts, United States, the company has retail stores, serving customers under its original name in Austria, Brazil, China, Denmark, France, Germany, India, Italy, Norway, Portugal, United Kingdom, and the United States, while operating subsidiaries in Argentina as Officenet-Staples, Belgium and Netherlands as Office Centre, Canada as Staples Canada (Bureau En Gros in Quebec), and in Italy as Mondoffice. Staples also does business exclusively with enterprises in multiple European countries as Staples Advantage.
Staples sells supplies, office machines, promotional products, furniture, technology and business services both in stores and online. The company opened its first store in Brighton, Massachusetts in 1986. Quill Corporation is Staples most profitable division, accounting for nearly 25% of the company’s net income. Between 1998 and 2009 Quill grew from $500 million in revenues to over $1.3 billion. The company is still one of Staples’ fastest growing divisions and is led by Michael Patriarca, President of Quill Corporation. The L in the logo is a stylized staple.
The idea for Staples was created in 1985, while founder Thomas G. Stemberg was working on a proposal for a different business. He needed a ribbon for his printer, but was unable to obtain one because his local dealer was closed for the Independence Day holiday. A frustration with the reliance on small stores for critical supplies combined with Stemberg’s background in the grocery business led to a vision for an office supply superstore. The first store was opened in Brighton, Massachusetts in 1986. In 1990, Staples began to expand to western United States, particularly in California.
In 1991, Staples founded its Canadian subsidiary, The Business Depot, and began opening stores under that name, though over a decade later, all stores were renamed as “Staples.” The first store opened in Vaughan, Ontario, north of Toronto. The following year, Staples began expanding into Europe, and opened its first store in Swansea, United Kingdom.
During its 10th anniversary in 1996, Staples became one of the Fortune 500 companies as sales surpass $3 billion. Staples acquired the naming rights for the Staples Center in Los Angeles during its construction in 1998. The 500th store was opened in Vero Beach, Florida and its 1000th store was opened in Duluth, Georgia.
On September 4, 1996, Staples and Office Depot announced plans to merge. The Federal Trade Commission decided that the superpower would unfairly increase office supply prices despite competition from OfficeMax, because OfficeMax did not have stores in many of the local markets that the merger would affect. Staples ultimately argued that chains such as Wal-Mart and Circuit City Stores represented significant competition, but this argument did little to sway the FTC. Following the denial of the merger by the FTC, a rivalry has formed between the two companies.
Between 1999 and 2001, unsuccessful attempts to enter telecommunications business was made as Staples created Staples Communications after the purchase of Canada-based company, Claricom, from an investment group. The company was later sold to Platinum Equities and renamed NextiraOne.
By 2001, Staples integrated its e-commerce website to all of its subsidiaries across the world. In 2002, Staples launches Staples Foundation for Learning and acquires Medical Arts Press, which becomes part of Quill Corporation. By 2004, Staples expanded to Austria and Denmark and in 2007, Staples opens its first store in India. In 2008, Staples acquired Dutch office supplies company Corporate Express, one of the largest office supply wholesalers in the world. Staples also launched 11 concept stores in the New England area featuring a large focus on small business and technology related services.