ThinkSmart Commences Trade In The US

ThinkSmart Commences Trade In The US

ThinkSmart Commences TradingIn The United States

– Roll-out to circa 137 stores in Florida to be complete by end of June 08

– Fully integrated online application system reduces operating costs

– Product to launch during U.S. National Small Business Week

ThinkSmart Limited (ASX:TSM), an international computer and office equipment financing company, today announced it has commenced trading in the United States with Office Depot (NYSE:ODP), a leading global provider of office products and services.

ThinkSmart has launched its B2B point-of-sale leasing product under the brand name of SmartWayLeasing in 21 Office Depot retail store locations in the Greater Tampa – St. Petersburg, Florida area.  It will expand the product to circa 137 stores across Florida by the end of June, exposing it to a market of 18 million people and 1.9 million small businesses.

Nationwide expansion is expected to be complete by early 2009 seeing the product eventually offered through all of Office Depot’s retail store locations in the United States. There are 300 million people and 23 million small businesses across the U.S.

SmartWayLeasing is a first-to-market offering in the U.S. that enables small businesses to get in-store, on-the-spot approval to lease office equipment, including computers, peripherals, and office furniture. 

ThinkSmart Founder and Managing Director, Ned Montarello, said Office Depot presented itself as the natural partner in the U.S. 

“Office Depot provides more office products and services to more customers in more countries than any other company, and its focus on the B2B small business market makes it a natural partner for us to grow both internationally and in the U.S.,” Montarello said.

“Our agreement will see the product roll-out systematically across the U.S. with strong integration into Office Depot’s systems, giving us a fully automated in-store process that can be supported during the initial launch stages through our operations centre in Europe,” Montarello added.

“Small businesses are facing many challenges with the current economic environment, and the new SmartWayLeasing option from Office Depot will help to provide these customers with the flexibility needed to stretch their equipment budgets further,“ said Chuck Rubin, President of North American Retail for Office Depot.

“Small business growth is a critical component that fuels today’s economy, and Office Depot understands what these customers need to take care of their business. That’s why we continue to look for new and innovative ways to support our customers and help them to succeed.”

About Office Depot Every day, Office Depot is Taking Care of Business for millions of customers around the globe.  For the local corner store as well as Fortune 500 companies, Office Depot provides products and services to its customers through more than 1,600 worldwide retail stores, a dedicated sales force, top-rated catalogues and a $4.9 billion e-commerce operation.  Office Depot has annual sales of approximately $15.5 billion, and employs about 49,000 associates around the world. The company provides more office products and services to more customers in more countries than any other company, and currently sells to customers directly or through affiliates in 43 countries.

Office Depot’s common stock is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol ODP and is included in the S&P 500 Index.  Additional press information can be found at:

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