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Office Depot, OfficeMax CEOs to stay in place pending merger (Feb 22)

An Office Depot store is pictured in Encinitas, California, February 19, 2013. REUTERS/Mike Blake
An Office Depot store is pictured in Encinitas, California, February 19, 2013. REUTERS/Mike Blake

(Reuters) - Office Depot Inc , which will merge with rival OfficeMax Inc , said the chief executives of both companies would remain in their positions pending the appointment of a CEO of the merged company.

The office supplies retailers will establish a selection committee consisting of an equal number of independent directors to identify a CEO, Office Depot said in a regulatory filing on Friday. (http://link.reuters.com/tyw26t)

Office Depot said on Wednesday it would merge with smaller rival OfficeMax in a $976 million all-stock deal but did not say who will lead the company or where it will be based.

Until completion of the merger, Office Depot would retain its headquarters in Boca Raton, Florida and OfficeMax in Naperville, Illinois, Office Depot said on Friday. Both companies will continue to operate under their existing names until a new headquarters and a new name for the businesses is approved.

In case of termination of the merger agreement, either company may be required to pay the other a termination fee of $30 million.

Shares of Office Depot closed at $4.21, while that of OfficeMax closed at $12.27 on the New York Stock Exchange on Friday.

(The story corrects headline and paragraphs 1 and 2 to make clear CEOs will remain in their respective roles until CEO of merged company is appointed; paragraph 4 to say companies have not decided location of merged company's headquarters.)

(Reporting by Neha Alawadhi in Bangalore)

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