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The Back-To-School Buzz From Staples The Office Superstore

Your Back-to-School Shopping List Should Include Staples' Top Ten Hot Back-to-School Items and Trends

Monday, August 3, 1998 11:20 am EDT

Dateline:

WESTBOROUGH, Mass.

Public Company Information:

NASDAQ:
SPLS

WESTBOROUGH, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Back-to-School buzz is underway, and students of all ages are filled with anticipation for the year ahead. Savvy students will want to be well prepared for the challenge of the classroom, and that means being well equipped. Staples(R) The Office Superstore is the one-stop Back-to-School headquarters, where you can find everything on your shopping list. So grab a pen and get ready to hit the stores!

The Back-to-School experts at Staples say that this year's hottest supplies will have a radical new look -- classics spiced up with a funky style and advanced ergonomic design features. Pens, binders and Post-it(R) Notes are revved up with metallic retro colors, improved designs and even a timeless childhood favorite: Winnie the Pooh.

1. Bold colors are back. Blue, teal and purple are this year's fashion colors in many Back-to-School items, including the ever-popular two-pocket portfolios. Metallic blue and purple are also featured in plastic drawer storage units from Iris that are predicted to be the hit of any dorm room.

2. It's all about comfort. Ergonomics may be a fancy word behind this year's biggest trend in writing instruments, but greater writing comfort is what it's all about. Bic is offering six new items with cushioned extra-wide barrels to reduce finger fatigue and cramps, so taking class notes won't be such a chore.

3. Ever seen a black Post-it Note? "Midnight Shades" are sure to be the rage this Fall. 3M and Pentel have teamed up to create two dramatic and eye-catching Post-it Note/pen combinations. One item features black notes packaged with a gold metallic gel pen, and the other features midnight blue notes packaged with a silver metallic gel pen.

4. No more dried up highlighters. Sanford's new "Liquid Accent" line of highlighters comes in packs featuring vibrant yellow, pink, green, blue and violet ink that's visible through a clear plastic window. Even better than the color is the fact that you can see when the ink is running low, so you'll never be caught with a dried up highlighter. These pens are "good to the last drop"!

5. Binders with a personal touch. The newest thing in binders comes from Avery. New "non-stick" viewbinders feature a clear overlay that won't stick to paper inserts. This lets kids personalize their binders with favorite photos without worrying about damaging them.

6. Licensing brings childhood favorites Back-to-School. The popularity of Winnie the Pooh and his pals from the 100-Acre Wood is apparent in school supplies in everything from binders to backpacks. Other licensed images on products that will be hot for Back-to-School 1998 range from elementary school-age favorites "Cuddly Cuties" to Lassen underwater murals for older students. Look for them in school hallways across the country this year.

7. Computers to fit any budget. The classroom is more high tech than ever and students are spending more and more time on-line. With state-of-the art graphics, increased memory and amazing speed, today's family computers offer increased productivity to students and their families, and Staples has a computer for every budget. Staples has Back-to-School savings on the popular Compaq 2256 and the Hewlett Packard 6330 and 6350.

8. Stay in touch with loved ones back home. Staples carries a wide selection of telephones designed to keep students and families in touch throughout the long school year. The cordless 900-megahertz phone from V-Tech, offers exceptional sound quality and range, and at Staples' exceptional price of $39.99, it's more affordable than ever. Back-to-School specials are also being offered on the AT&T answering machine, available at its lowest price ever of $19.99.

9. The Back-to-School savings keep adding up with calculators from Staples. Whether you're shopping for a simple calculator to help your grade-schooler add and subtract or a more complex scientific or graphing calculator for your math-major's number crunching needs, you'll find it at Staples -- at the right price.

10. Dictating equipment means you won't miss a thing. Students wanting to lighten their loads are turning increasingly to microcassette recorders as a method of taking notes in the classroom. The newest models are not only a terrific value, but are slim, trim and ready to go anywhere. Staples is offering Olympus dictating equipment at the special price of $19.99, for a limited time only.

Staples, Inc. is a $5 billion retailer of office supplies, furniture and technology to consumers and businesses from home-based businesses to Fortune 50 companies in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Germany. Staples, headquartered outside Boston, Mass., invented the office superstore concept and today is the largest operator of office superstores in the world. The company, which has grown earnings per share at a 40% compound rate over the last five years, has 30,000 employees serving the business customer through over 800 office superstores, mail order catalogs and a contract business. Visit Staples on the Internet at: www.staples.com.

Contact:

Staples, Inc.
Christina Erridge. 508-370-8727
christina.erridge@staples.com
or
Schneider & Associates
Kathleen Noonan, 617-536-3300
knoonan@schneiderpr.com

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