Office Depot Inc. reported a first-quarter net profit of $45 million, or 8 cents a share, compared with a loss of $109 million, or 21 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. The office supply retailer said excluding non-recurring items, including costs associated with the planned acquisition of Office Depot by Staples Inc. , adjusted earnings per share were 13 cents, matching the FactSet consensus. Sales fell 11% to $3.88 billion from $4.35 billion, missing the FactSet consensus of $4.11 billion, amid a 9% decline in North America and a 20% drop in international sales. "As expected, we experienced sales declines compared to prior year, driven primarily by planned store closures and foreign currency translation," said Chief Executive Roland Smith. The company still expects 2015 sales to be lower than 2014. Office Depot said it continues to expect its acquisition by Staples to close by the end of the year. The stock, which was still inactive in premarket trade, has climbed 9.4% year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 2.7%.
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