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Staples to close stores but has not disclosed locations

Updated March 11, 2017 - 10:53 am

Staples has posted disappointing results and announced plans to shutter 70 stores in North America.

Same-store sales in the region declined 7 percent during the fourth quarter, the Framingham, Massachusetts-based company said on Thursday.

Earnings came in at 25 cents a share in the period, excluding some items. That was a penny less than analysts estimated.

The store-closing move, which follows the elimination of 48 locations in 2016, will affect about 5 percent of stores in North America. Staples had 1,255 locations in the U.S. and 304 in Canada at the end of the last fiscal year.

There are four stores in the Las Vegas Valley, but none of the stores have heard yet whether they are on the list of closing stores, said employees who declined to give their names because their employers had not given them permission to talk about the closings.

The four valley stores are:

■ 6677 Las Vegas Blvd. South Suite 108, Las Vegas.

■ 6960 N. Fifth St., North Las Vegas.

■ 675 S. Green Valley Parkway, Henderson.

■ 280 W. Lake Mead Parkway, Henderson.

Winnowing its store count is part of Staples’ plan to shift away from traditional brick-and-mortar retail. The company is looking to sell more business services and connect with customers online. Staples also offloaded its retail business in the U.K. last quarter.

Staples closed 242 stores in 2014 and 28 in 2016.

The latest announcement comes almost a year after Staples’ failed attempt to acquire Office Depot. Federal regulators blocked the merger on antitrust grounds last May, arguing that it would hurt business customers. That sent the company in search of a new growth plan.

The fallout from the foiled deal included the resignation of Chief Executive Officer Ron Sargent and a sputtering stock. Shira Goodman, who had been serving as interim CEO, was named to the job permanently in September.

In October, Staples Inc. embarked on a new strategy to license its name and get more revenue from business services.

After falling Thursday, shares of Staples rose 19 cents, or 2.24 percent, to close at $8.68 on Friday.

Review-Journal writer Wade Tyler Millward contributed to this report.

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