Transcript: Corporate America Responds To Katrina
This is a partial transcript from "Your World with Neil Cavuto," August 29, 2005, that was edited for clarity.
NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: As businesses in Hurricane Katrina's (search) path get destroyed, Office Depot (ODP) is jumping in to help. The company pledged to contribute $1 million to the American Red Cross for the massive relief effort that is yet to come.
Joining us by telephone from Delray Beach, Florida, Steve Odland. Mr. Odland is the chairman and CEO of Office Depot.
Sir, good to have you.
STEVE ODLAND, CHAIRMAN & CEO, OFFICE DEPOT: Thank you, Neil.
CAVUTO: Now, I know you committed this $1 million. Did you get any other takers or businesses? I know you were asking others to help and contribute to this cause.
ODLAND: Well, Office Depot stepped out yesterday, in advance of the devastation, and donated $1 million to the American Red Cross.
And we have challenged all companies in America to step forward and match or beat our donation. We also are providing supplies by disaster relief camps throughout the region. And we're working with FEMA (search) and the local chambers of commerce. I know the Business Roundtable has stepped forward and challenged its members through its Partnership For Disaster Relief to donate to the American Red Cross. So, I know a lot of companies will be stepping forward for this historic storm.
CAVUTO: Mr. Odland, I know you have a lot of people, customers, in the hurricane's path. Were you getting any signals from people working through the Red Cross that they were, in fact, going to use this money?
ODLAND: Yes. And Office Depot is located in South Florida. We have had six hurricanes rip through here over the past year. And Katrina came through South Florida first as a Category 1. And we witnessed the devastation here.
Seeing it hit the Gulf states as a Category 4 or 5 just is an enormous impact. We knew in advance that this was going to have a material impact just on our own company. We have got 50 stores closed. And Office Depot will have 100 or 200 closed. But that's just small in regards to the impact on the economy and the impact on our customers, which is why Office Depot has stepped forward and tried to challenge all companies to step forward here.
You know, I think American companies were at the forefront of tsunami relief, and I think it's just tremendous with the generosity. But here is the American tsunami. And we need to step forward and donate now for the relief efforts that need to be coming over the next month.
CAVUTO: All right, Steve Odland, thank you very much, of Office Depot. Appreciate it, sir.
ODLAND: Thank you, Neil.
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