Fri, Jun 30, 2017 - Page 10 News List

Sycamore Partners purchasing Staples chain for US$6.9bn

AP, NEW YORK

Private equity firm Sycamore Partners is buying office supplies chain Staples Inc for US$6.9 billion.

The companies on Wednesday said that shareholders of Framingham, Massachusetts-based Staples would get US$10.25 per share.

Staples’ stock closed on Wednesday up US$0.77, or 8.4 percent, to US$9.93, fueled by a late-afternoon report of a deal. The stock rose another 1.5 percent in extended trading after the deal was announced.

Changing shopping patterns, like the shift to online buying, have hurt office-supplies megastores like Staples.

Amazon.com Inc has become a prime competitor to Staples for corporate customers.

The deal with New York-based Sycamore Partners will allow Staples to adjust to the challenges as a private company.

Staples’ sales have declined 6.1 percent over the past five years to US$18.2 billion.

Staples is the largest “big box” office-supply chain, but it has cut the number of stores it runs to about 1,600 from nearly 2,300 in 2012, according to FactSet.

Last year, Staples shredded a proposed US$6.3 billion merger with rival Office Depot Inc after encountering stern resistance from US antitrust regulators that culminated in a federal judge blocking the deal.

Sycamore Partners managing director Stefan Kaluzny said the deal would help Staples pursue its long-term strategy.

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