Staples-Office Depot Merger Hearing Reaches Stalemate
The merger, which the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) opposes, has been in the works for some time. In January, we reported that Staples and Office Depot waived the merger-agreement termination date of Feb. 4, extending it to May 16, 2016, in order to allow this ongoing court litigation with the FTC to continue. In February, the European Commission, the executive body of the European Union, approved Staples' acquisition of Office Depot.
According to Bloomberg, a federal judge involved in the hearing was skeptical of the FTC's case, and advised all parties to "sit down" to come to a resolution. The FTC filed a complaint in December, stating that the proposed acquisition would violate antitrust laws by reducing nationwide competition for "consumable" office supplies, including writing instruments, notepads, folders and paper products, which are sold to large-business customers.
We will continue to cover this story as it develops.