Industry gasps as dot-com makes a profit

Rumours of flying pigs remain unconfirmed

Rumours of flying pigs remain unconfirmed

The online division of Staples, the US office supply specialist, has spoilt the dot-com doom-mongers' day by turning in a profit. Second quarter revenues for staples.com stood at $234m, up a massive 144 per cent on the same period last year. The all-important profit figure was a healthy $5m. The company had not expected the online operations to make it into the black for another six months. Overall, the group's profits fell 5.5 per cent. A key factor in the web business' success is the high average spend going through the site: the typical online customer makes an order of $150. The news comes as some relief for the company's new media division. Back in March, it abandoned all hope of an IPO for staples.com as the market started to collapse.