O.D. is a toxic company. The best thing that Staples could do is just pay the penalty and let the deal die. O.D. will eventually go bankrupt and Staples will have it all for nothing. This whole thing was brought about by a few people who wanted to make a shti load of money. Jeffrey Smith bullied his way through with Office Depot, and before the ink had time to even dry, he was bullying his way into Staples. This deal should be squashed like the annoying little bug that Smith is.
Staples is barely making money as it is. If they take on the perpetually losing balance sheet of Office Depot, it will be the end of both of them. Staples would be much better off just sitting on the sidelines and waiting until Office Depot finally implodes and goes out of business. Staples could then just go in and buy up some of the stores (that actually make a profit) in areas that they are not in at the present time. Add to that the dividend problem. If this deal goes through, I would bet that there will not be any more dividends to Staple holders for the foreseeable future. I help Office Depot for a long time and made a profit on it a few times, but I have always felt that the Office Depot company was toxic.