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Staples is rolling out its Staples brand products in Japan

Staples Inc., the Framingham-based office supply giant, said Wednesday that it has begun selling its private-label products to business customers in Japan.

Products initially include filing products, fasteners, notebooks, writing instruments, and other business essentials, Staples said in a press release, and the plan is to expand those offerings over time.

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Those Staples brand products will be available in Japan through hundreds of dealers as well as more than 25 retail stores.

In rolling out those products, Staples said it has established a wholesale distribution relationship with Jointex, an office products wholesaler and a division of PLUS Corp., a manufacturer of stationery and office furniture based in Tokyo.

Private-label goods can be attractive to consumers and business customers because they often cost less than brand-name products. And generally, private-label goods have higher profit margins for retailers than those made by brand-name manufacturers.

Normally a strong performer, Staples could use a nice lift. In November, the company reported a 2 percent decline in third quarter revenues when calculated in US dollars.

About a month earlier, Staples unveiled a cost-cutting plan to close some stores and reduce the size of many existing locations.

Chris Reidy can be reached at
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