News: The Staple has been removed; New CEO to come

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Staples Inc. is penciling in a new CEO.

Longtime top officer Ron Sargent will vacate the position June 14, after the office supplies company’s annual shareholders’ meeting, Staples said Tuesday.  Shira Goodman will become interim CEO while a full search is completed.  Goodman who oversees e-commerce, business-to-business and retail operations will slot into the interim title naturally.

Sargent, who joined Staples in 1989, has been CEO since 2002. Staples, No. 66 in the B2B E-Commerce 300, is fresh off abandoning plans to merge with Office Depot Inc. (No. 87) after a federal judge prevented the companies from merging by siding withthe Federal Trade Commission, which raised antitrust objections to the $6.3 billion deal. The two office supplies companies on May 10 said they would not appeal the ruling by U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan.

Staples divides its business into two categories: North American Stores & Online unit, including Staples.com and Staples retail stores; and North American Commercial, which focuses on web sales to businesses with more than 10 employees through its e-commerce sites StaplesAdvantage.com (now also known as Staples Business Advantage) and Quill.com. For business customers with 10 or fewer employees, Staples encourages them to shop on Staples.com, which caters to consumers and small businesses.

In its Q1 2016 earnings report released in mid-May, net income attributed to Staples’ North American Commercial unit, including StaplesAdvantage.com and Quill.com, increased 10.4% $148 million from $134 million.

“Under Ron, Staples made consistent advancements that ensured and extended the company’s market leadership in the office products sector,” says Robert Sulentic, independent lead director of the company’s board. “Most notably he drove the growth of the commercial contract business which is central to Staples’ go-forward strategy. He also worked diligently on the acquisition of Office Depot and the board appreciates the strong effort he made to secure governmental approval. With the termination of the merger, we mutually agreed that now is the right time to transition to new management to lead Staples through its next phase of growth. Shira has tremendous experience and a long track record of success at Staples, always bringing fresh perspective and change to every role she has had.”

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