Sears Canada to sell stake in eight properties for C$315 million

Mon Nov 11, 2013 6:46am EST

Nov 11 (Reuters) - Sears Canada Inc said it would sell its 50 percent stake in eight Canadian properties for about C$315 million ($300.30 million), as the struggling department store chain continues to offload real estate in the country.

The company said it will sell its interests in four regional shopping centers, two strip centers and two open-air retail centers to Montez Income Properties Corp, a unit of Montez Corp, which invests in real estate.

The deal comes almost two weeks after Sears Canada, controlled by Sears Holdings Corp, said it would close its flagship downtown Toronto store and end the leases on four other locations in a C$400 million deal.

Sears Canada said on Monday its partner, The Westcliff Group of Companies, will continue to hold its 50 percent stake and exclusively manage the eight properties.

Sears Canada said the stores on the properties will remain open and that it expects the deal with Montez to close on Jan. 8.

Sears has suffered steep declines in same-store sales and has lost market share amid tough competition from U.S. rivals like Wal-Mart Stores Inc and Target Corp.

Toronto-based Sears Canada had joint venture interests in 11 shopping centers across Canada with Westcliffe and Ivanhoe Cambridge Properties, according to its 2012 annual report.

Shares of Sears Canada closed at C$16 on the Toronto Stock Exchange on Friday.

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