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Staples Selects Vigo County, Indiana for $40 Million Distribution Center Site

Thursday, January 14, 1999 7:00 am EST

Dateline:

WESTBOROUGH, Mass.

Public Company Information:

NASDAQ:
SPLS
"It increases the productivity of our distribution network by driving down the cost and time of delivering products to our customers. This investment helps us maintain our industry leadership as the lowest cost channel of distribution for office products"

WESTBOROUGH, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Staples Inc (NASDAQ:SPLS) announced today that it has selected the Vigo County Industrial Park, Terre Haute, Ind., as the site for its newest distribution center.

The company plans to invest up to $40 million in the distribution center that will serve up to 250 retail stores in 19 Midwestern states. Initial plans call for a 500,000 square-foot highly automated facility on 60 acres. The facility will employ 350 people within the first year and up to 500 people within two years. The building and property are designed with expansion capabilities.

The distribution center will be the fourth in a nationwide network of regional distribution centers currently supporting Staples' 711 stores in the United States. The Vigo County site will support the planned rapid expansion of Staples in the Midwest.

"Our newest distribution center in Terre Haute is a critical link to support our new store growth," said Thomas G. Stemberg, chairman and chief executive officer of Staples. "It increases the productivity of our distribution network by driving down the cost and time of delivering products to our customers. This investment helps us maintain our industry leadership as the lowest cost channel of distribution for office products," he said.

Staples will use the same leading edge technology that it has used in its previous regional distribution centers including an advanced computer system for building management. There will be more than two miles of conveyors and three miles of "pick" modules in the building. Radio frequency technology will be used to receive, store and retrieve back-up product.

Staples currently operates a 830,000 square foot facility in Hagerstown, Md; a 310,000 square foot facility in Killingly, Conn.; and will open it newest 495,000 square foot distribution center in Rialto, Calif. in early l999.

The purchase and sale agreement on the property must be signed, and approval of the economic development package must be received, before work can proceed on the project. Staples then plans to break ground on the new distribution center this March, hire its first employees in the spring, and start receiving inventory by January, 2000. By mid- summer 2000, the facility will be serving all Staples Midwestern stores with a full product line.

"We initially looked at about 100 sites for this distribution center," said Stemberg. "We settled on Vigo County for three reasons: the quality of the local workforce, and the business friendly and low tax climate in Indiana, but most of all, we were impressed by the local officials in Terre Haute and Vigo County. They showed an enthusiasm for Staples and a commitment to work with us that made this deal possible. We look forward to a long and productive relationship with the people of Vigo County and the State of Indiana."

Today, Staples has 13 superstores in Indiana, and announced plans in November l998 to open its first superstore in Terre Haute. Ground breaking will take place next month, with a planned opening date of early October l999.

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 910 office superstores, mail order catalogs, an e-commerce site and a contract business. More information about the company can be found at http://www.staples.com.

Contact:

Staples Corp. Communications
Media Contact: Elizabeth Allen
(508) 370-8612
or
Staples Investor Relations
Investor Contact: Diane Basile
(508) 370-7963

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