Staples Launches Hostile Bid for Corporate Express

Amsterdam, Netherlands Staples Inc. on Monday launched a hostile 1.5 billion euro ($2.34 billion) bid for Corporate Express NV because the Dutch office supplier was unwilling to negotiate.

Staples said in a statement that Corporate Express shareholders could tender their shares as of Tuesday until June 27, subject to a possible extension.

Corporate Express last week rejected Staples offer, saying it was still significantly undervaluing the company but that it was willing to talk. Staples had raised its offer to 8 euros per share from 7.25 euros previously.

Staples confirmed the offer price of 8 euros per share, and based on 182.848 million Corporate Express shares outstanding, the equity value is worth 1.46 billion euros. Including net debt, the value is 2.8 billion euros, Staples said.

Staples has secured a $3 billion credit line for the deal.

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