NOPA President and CEO Mike Tucker's Response to the S.P. Richards and Essendant Merger

A message from NOPA President and CEO, Mike Tucker:

I have been asked by several members to share NOPA’s position on the recent merger announcement by Essendant and SP Richards.  Based on our very large and diverse membership it is not possible to provide an answer that all dealers would find agreeable.  That said, as the president of the Association, I’m happy to offer my observations based on 35+ years in the industry.

Prior to the announcement, dealers had the option of using two suppliers for their non-stock requirements; call one first, call the other second.  Both companies are struggling financially because of the general decline of the OP category and leakage to internet re-sellers like Amazon.  Not to mention the new battleground for market share with Staples, Office Depot and each other.

The question is, are dealers better off with a single stronger and financially sound wholesale partner or two weaker suppliers who are competing with each other, Staples and Office Depot?  Only the dealers can answer that question.

As our industry continues to evolve NOPA will support the IDC, providing unbiased feedback, education and advocacy to help dealers navigate the sea of change.