With the recently announced departure of Bruce Besanko, Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Chief Administrative Officer of OfficeMax, co-leadership of the integration planning process will transition fully to Steve Parsons, Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer of OfficeMax. A member of the executive-level Integration Steering Committee, Mr. Parsons has a strong experience base in integration planning for mergers of varying complexity and scale, up to and including multi-billion-dollar transactions, prior to joining OfficeMax. Mr. Parsons will partner with Mike Newman, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Office Depot, who continues in his co-leadership role.

“We recognize that the synergy benefits are an important part of the shareholder value that is being created from this merger and I’m very pleased with the tangible momentum of the integration planning process so far,” said Neil Austrian, Chairman and CEO of Office Depot. “The talent and dedication of the teams working on the integration give us confidence that the combined company will deliver on our promise to build a stronger, more efficient competitor positioned to meet the growing challenges of a rapidly changing industry. We remain optimistic that the merger will close by the end of the 2013 calendar year, and we continue to work cooperatively with the FTC as it conducts its review of the proposed combination.”

“We are extremely pleased with the progress we are making in our integration planning, which will ensure a smooth transition for all of our stakeholders and allow us to begin capturing identified cost synergies starting on Day One,” said Ravi Saligram, President and CEO of OfficeMax. “True to the spirit of our merger of equals structure, objective decisions aimed at identifying the best systems and processes for the combined company are being made at an appropriate pace. I have been particularly impressed with the expertise and collaboration demonstrated by integration team members of both companies, and my confidence level in attainment of our synergies is even higher now.”

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