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Leon’s Furniture to take over Sears Home store on Tolmie Ave.

The 50,000-square-foot Sears Home store on Tolmie Avenue, slated to close in July, will reopen in September as Leon’s Furniture.
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Leon's Furniture has taken over the leases of eight Sears Home locations across Canada, including the Victoria outlet at Blanshard and Tolmie streets.

The 50,000-square-foot Sears Home store on Tolmie Avenue, slated to close in July, will reopen in September as Leon’s Furniture.

The Toronto-based national furniture chain said Tuesday it has taken over the leases of eight Sears Home locations across Canada, including four in B.C. It’s the first time Leon’s has entered the market in B.C., although the company has a presence in the province through its 27 Brick furniture locations.

The other B.C. locations are in Abbotsford, Langley and Richmond. Leon’s is also taking Sears Home leases in Ontario at Brampton, Mississauga and Toronto, with another one in Moncton, N.B.

Leon’s Furniture said all the stores it acquired from Sears are scheduled to open in September and the Victoria store will require about $500,000 in upgrades.

“This is a unique opportunity for us to expand our market share and lay the groundwork for continued growth,” Edward Leon, president and chief operating officer, said in a statement Tuesday.

Sears Canada said turning the leases over to Leon’s will help it “become a stronger company.”

“We are working on rationalizing our store network to ensure our core store physical footprint is highly productive,” Brandon Stranzl, executive chairman at Sears Canada, said in a statement.

In Greater Victoria, Sears said most of the product lines from the Sears Home location are either already available at its Hillside Centre location or will be moved there.

The Sears Home store in Victoria has 25 full- and part-time employees. It was not immediately known if Leon’s would offer those staff jobs under the new banner. Leon’s said the eight locations will require capital expenditures of between $300,000 and $500,000 before opening.