Federal Judge Blocks Proposed Merger Of Staples And Office Depot
An Office Depot store is seen on May 11, 2016 in Miami, Florida. A federal judge blocked the proposed merger of Staples Inc. and Office Depot Inc. because of antitrust concerns.  Joe Raedle—Getty Images

Office Depot Is Closing 300 More Stores

Office Depot, which scrapped a plan to merge with larger rival Staples in May on antitrust concerns, said it would close about 300 more stores in the next three years to help cut annual costs by $250 million by the end of 2018.

The company's shares were up about 1.2% at $3.33 in premarket trading on Wednesday.

Office Depot, which closed 400 U.S. stores by the end of the second quarter, said its sales fell 6.5% to $3.22 billion in the quarter ended June 25, roughly in line with the average analyst estimate, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Read More: 12 Major Retailers Closing Stores Like Crazy

It was the company's seventh straight drop in quarterly sales. Both Staples and Office Depot have been hit by competition from online retailers such as Amazon.com that have been discounting school and office supplies.

Besides store closures, Office Depot is also planning to cut costs by reducing procurement and general and administrative costs.

Office Depot said it had 1,513 stores in North America at the end of the second quarter, and about 1,800 globally.

The company said it had initiated a quarterly dividend of 2.5 cents per share and would increase its stock buyback plan to $250 million from $100 million.

The company cut its adjusted operating income forecast for 2016 to $450 million-$470 million, from $500 million, citing the "adverse impact on the company's sales resulting from the prolonged Staples' acquisition attempt."

Office Depot also reduced its capital expenditure budget for 2016 by $75 million to about $175 million.

The retailer reported net income of $210 million, or 38 cents per share, for the second quarter, compared with a loss of $58 million, or 11 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding items, the Boca Raton, Florida-based company earned 3 cents per share, missing the average analyst estimate of 6 cents.

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