NEW YORK (AP) - Office Depot Inc. and OfficeMax have agreed to merge in an all-stock deal that would transform the $21.2 billion office supply retail sector.
Boca Raton, Fla.-based Office Depot Inc. and Naperville, Ill.-based OfficeMax say holders of OfficeMax shares will receive 2.69 shares of Office Depot for every OfficeMax share they own.
That's equal to about $13.50 per share, giving the deal a total value of about $1.2 billion.
Analyst say if the deal closes it would likely benefit the largest office supply player Staples Inc. because the combined entity will likely close stores.
The newspaper, citing unidentified people familiar with the matter, said yesterday that talks are at an advanced stage, and an announcement could come as early as this week.
Representatives of both companies declined to comment.
The office supply business is very competitive. Staples is a big player, along with Amazon and big discount stores such as Costco and Wal-Mart.
Boca Raton, Fla.-based Office Depot has about 1,675 stores worldwide, mostly in the U.S. and Canada. OfficeMax, based in Naperville, Ill., has about 900 stores in the U.S. and Mexico. If the two companies merged, they could close stores that compete against each other, as well as reduce costs.