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Staples President Miles Jumps Ship To Berkshire Partners

Staples, Inc. has announced that its president and COO Michael Miles Jr. is resigning from the company, effective February 2. He will join Berkshire Partners LLC, the Boston-based investment firm as an Advisory Director, the firm noted.

Berkshire stated that Miles will work to source new investment ideas and serve as an operating advisor to portfolio companies.

According to a Staples filing with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, Ronald Sargent, the company’s chairman and CEO, will take over Miles’ responsibilities as president, effective February 3.

Staples has faced a challenging business environment. In a recent research note, Ian Gordon, a Standard & Poors analyst, stated that he expected a 0.5% sales decrease in fiscal 2013 to $24.9 billion, with comparable store sales slippage partially offset by the results from an extra week in the fiscal year.

He asserted, “We forecast a 2% decline in square footage as Staples closes and downsizes under-performing stores to boost profitability. We expect the European business to remain challenged by the macro environment.”

Yet he added, “We also project marginal improvement in the contract business as growth in online and newer categories offsets pressure in core office supplies as the economic recovery stalls.”