Boca Raton, Fla. – Office Depot and OfficeMax have narrowed their list of CEO candidates to five, and expect to have the person in place in September. The rival chains are set to merge in a $1.2 billion deal that is expected to close by the end of the year.
In a joint press release, the two retailers said that after reviewing and vetting more than 100 candidates and interviewing eight, the CEO Selection Committee has narrowed the field down to five candidates it believes can lead the combined business forward following the merger.
“Our objective is to have a candidate in place prior to the closing of the merger to address critical issues such as headquarters location, company name, culture and strategy,” said Office Depot board member Nigel Travis, the chairman and CEO of Dunkin’ Brands, Inc.
Each member of the committee has been actively engaged in evaluating the slate of candidates, including several that were suggested by Starboard Value, LP, an investor in Office Depot’s stock. The criteria for evaluating qualified candidates included: public company CEO with Wall Street credibility and a global perspective, or strong executive from a Fortune 100 organization; high integrity, team building, transformational leader with a proven track record; and experienced business integrator.
As announced on June 11, 2013, the two companies hired executive search firm Korn/Ferry International to assist the CEO Selection Committee in its comprehensive search. The committee is co-chaired by OfficeMax board member Jim Marino, the former president and CEO of Alberto Culver Company, and Travis.