TORONTO — Sears Canada Inc. snapped up the most famous name in Canadian retailing, for $20 million in cash Monday, saying it might keep the T. Eaton Co. banner alive via the Internet and catalog business, but probably not in a store format.
Toronto-based Sears Canada, which is 55% owned by Sears, Roebuck & Co. of Hoffman Estates, Ill., said it would assume ownership of the Eaton name, trademark, Web site and eight stores across the country, including three in Toronto.
Under the deal, Sears Canada would buy all outstanding shares of Eaton, which sought protection from its creditors last month under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act. Sears, currently Canada's most successful retailer, also would pay $13.5 million upon realization of tax losses estimated at about $263.5 million.
Sears has an option to buy five more Eaton stores under the deal. The eight stores being acquired would be converted to Sears outlets.