Office Depot Launches Catalog for HUBs

Office Depot has released its first catalog that showcases its suppliers that are Historically Underutilized Businesses. The 112-page HUB catalog sells more than 1,400 items ranging from office supplies to office furniture.

HUBs are businesses that have not historically had equal opportunities, and include certified minority, women, disabled, veteran and small businesses, explains Office Depot spokesperson Melissa Perlman. The HUB catalog first dropped in September and that a second edition will drop in February. Office Depot officially unveiled the catalog Oct. 26 at the National Minority Supplier Diversity Council Annual Conference Trade Show in New Orleans.

Office Depot’s North American Business Solutions Division did $4.15 billion in sales in 2008, and Perlman says more than $500,000 of that was from sales to HUBs.

“We’ve carried a number of products from HUB suppliers, but this is the first time we’ve put a catalog together to promote these businesses,” Perlman says. “There was a demand because we do have some customers who are required to make a certain percent of its purchases through HUBs.”

Though not directly related, Perlman says the idea to create a HUB book was influenced by Office Depot’s Green Book launch in 2003. Sales in the HUB segment were growing, and the demand for products made it a sound business decision, she says.

Perlman says a corresponding e-commerce site for the HUB catalog will launch in November.

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