Staples is making a bid to acquire its rival Office Depot for $40 per share or $2.1 billion. In a letter to the Office Depot board of directors, Staples proposed to acquire 100 percent of the issued and outstanding common stock of the company.
In its letter, Staples also noted that it may be willing to pay more than $2.1 billion if Office Depot would consider selling its CompuCom unit or other business-to-business operations.
“Staples has sufficient resources to finance the transaction, so our obligation to proceed with the transaction is not subject to a financing contingency. With respect to regulatory approvals, Staples is prepared to take all necessary measures to divest ODP’s B2B Business to a FTC approved and qualified buyer concurrently with the closing of the overall transaction, thereby satisfying any reasonably anticipated regulatory objections,” said Stefan Kaluzny, on behalf of the Board of Directors of USR Parent, Inc. in a statement.
Staples urged the company to cooperate with regulators as the process will take at least six months. The company has gone ahead and notified both U.S. and Canadian regulators about its bid.
This is not Staple’s first shot at acquiring Office Depot. The two companies tried finalizing a deal in 1997 when the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) filed a motion for a preliminary injunction to block the proposed acquisition stating “that the $4 billion acquisition would allow the combined firm to control prices for the sale of office supplies in numerous metropolitan areas in the United States.”
And then, in 2015, Office Depot’s shareholders approved a $6.3 billion merger with Staples, which was again blocked by the FTC through an injunction. As a result of the ruling, Staples was forced to terminate the proposed merger.