In the Matter of Staples/Essendant, Inc., File No. 1810180 #02669

Submission Number:
Adam Burck
Initiative Name:
In the Matter of Staples/Essendant, Inc., File No. 1810180
Hello FTC Board, I have worked in the Community and Economic Development field for 30 years in Chicago and Southwest Michigan. Much of my work has focused on supporting the small business community; the creator of the most new jobs in our economy. In fact, I have been a member of the small business community myself, having worked for local Chambers of Commerce, Economic and Community Development Corporations and other non-profit and governmental agencies. I have seen first-hand the onerous requirements and difficult environment that our local, state and federal governments create for our small businesses. The regulatory hurdles and bevvy of permits and other legal hurdles are a real difficulty for small businesses, where the owner often has to handle these affairs themselves due to financial limitations. Yet, our small businesses have survived, but every new regulatory change that favors large corporations tends to work to the disadvantage of our small businesses. Small businesses create the most new jobs but yet our government is making it harder and harder for small businesses to compete. Why is this so? Because corporations can pay lobbyists large fees to convince our elected officials to favor large corporations. I beg of you to keep the playing field level for our small office supply retailers. I run a small, non-profit organization in a small city in Michigan, and we utilize the services of one of these independent office supply retailers. They provide an amazing service for us, by providing us with affordable office supplies AND a friendly customer service agent who can provide personalize service to our agency. I would hate to lose this service because the government allows a corporation to buy only one of the two office suppliers in the country. Yes, only TWO office suppliers. If anything, the FTC should be trying to expand the population of office suppliers instead of giving a large corporation control of one of only two suppliers in country. What ever happened to anti-trust concerns?!?! PLEASE, I implore you to reconsider the decision to allow Staples and their parent, Sycamore Partners, to purchase Essendant. We must keep these suppliers independent of a retailer who has no interest in serving their competition. You will be providing Staples access to and control of highly sensitive data about the purchasing deals that small businesses have with Essendant. By doing this, you are going to drive many independent office supply retailers out of business and reduce the competitive environment that helps consumers stretch their dollars AND you will be killing the biggest job creators in our economy: Small Businesses. Please disapprove the purchase of Essendant by Staples and Sycamore Partners. Thank you for hearing my concerns, Adam Burck