Shareholders OK merger of OfficeMax with Office Depot

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NAPERVILLE, Ill. — OfficeMax Inc. shareholders voted overwhelmingly Wednesday to approve the merger between the office supplies retailer and its Boca Raton, Fla.-based competitor, Office Depot Inc.

The vote was part of a special shareholders meeting in Naperville, Ill., that lasted less than 10 minutes. Approximately 85 percent of shares voted on the merger, with 99 percent of them in favor of it, according to OfficeMax Chairman Rakesh Gangwal.

Office Depot shareholders also signed off on the proposed merger at the same time in Florida.

By combining, the companies hope to generate roughly $18 billion in sales and make headway against industry leader Staples Inc.

The deal still awaits regulatory approval from the Federal Trade Commission and is expected to close by the end of the year. Also still undecided is where the combined company will be located, what it will be named, and who will lead it.