Life at Staples

We collaborate to innovate

Our History

Take a look at how it all started, where we’ve gone over the years and what we’re focusing on today.


One fateful Fourth of July weekend, Tom Stemberg broke the ribbon on his typewriter and went in search of a replacement. Stores were closed for the holiday, and the ones still open just didn’t have enough of a selection. Tom cam
to a realization: businesses needed a reliable, one-stop supplier for office supplies. Ten months later, the first Staples® store — and the world’s first office supply superstore — opened in Brighton, Massachusetts.


In 1989, our best-selling item was a case of copy paper, all 53 pounds of it. Customers asked if it could be delivered. We thought that was pretty smart, and later that year, we launched Staples Direct, our catalog delivery service, to
do just that.


In 1993, after years of rapid and successful retail expansion, Staples entered the contract sales market. We partnered with National Office Supply, a company specializing in Fortune 500 clients. This was the beginning of what is now Staples
Business Advantage®..

Avatar® was launched in 1998, becoming one of the first online storefronts. We made sure customers had a seamless experience no matter how they shopped, with in-store returns for online purchases, and Internet kiosks at our retail
locations. In 1999® was launched to offer our contract customers the same convenience of ordering online.


Inventors of an industry


Staples delivers


Serving businesses, large and small.


Inventors of an industry