Office Depot, OfficeMax Merger Puts Pressure on Staples

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) approved Office Depot's (NYSE: OPD) purchase of OfficeMax (NYSE: OMX) on Friday, Nov. 1, creating a giant office supplies powerhouse to compete against Staples (NASDAQ: SPLS).


The FTC's decision, which closes the agency's seven-month investigation into the merger, is based on the fact that online office supplies retailers will allow for competition in the office supplies market. The business climate has changed significantly since 1997, when the FTC ruled that Staples's acquisition of Office Depot was anticompetitive, according to the decision.


"The current competitive dynamics are very different. The commission's investigation shows that today's market for the sale of consumable office supplies is broader," the FTC wrote in a statement, Bloomberg reported.


Office Depot and OfficeMax agreed to the $1.17 billion merger in February. They said the merged company would have combined revenue of about $18 billion as of the end of 2012, compared with more than $24 billion in sales for Staples, the largest office-supplies chain.


For more, see:

This Bloomberg article


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