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Sears Holdings Looks to Take Over Sears Canada

By Home Furnishings Business in on February 2006 Sears Holdings Corp., North America's third-largest broadline retailer, expects to mail out its take-over bid circular for all of the outstanding common shares of Sears Canada Inc. this week.

The bid, which excludes shares already held by Sears Holdings and its affiliates, offers Sears Canada shareholders C$16.86 per share. Sears Holdings expects to receive in the next few days the independent formal valuation required to be included in the take-over bid circular. Sears Holdings had announced the offer on Dec. 5, 2005.

Sears Holdings also announced that it will waive the minimum condition of its offer, so that subject to the satisfaction or waiver of the other conditions, Sears Holdings will acquire any and all Sears Canada shares tendered to its offer prior to the expiration date.

Natcan Investment Management Inc. has agreed to tender all common shares it owns or controls to the offer. As of December 5, 2005, Natcan owned or controlled 9,699,862 common shares or approximately 9.06 percent of the outstanding common shares of Sears Canada.

"We are fully committed to moving forward with our offer at C$16.86 per share and purchasing any shares tendered at that price, including those owned by Natcan," said Alan Lacy, vice chairman of Sears Holdings. "We believe that most Sears Canada shareholders will agree that C$16.86 is a fair price and will tender their shares to our offer once it is formally made. We feel it is important to communicate to shareholders that we intend to purchase all validly tendered shares and, while we would prefer to own 100 percent of Sears Canada, we are committed to increasing our ownership through this offer in any case."

Sears Holdings Corp. has close to $55 billion in annual revenues and around 3,900 full-line and specialty retail stores in the United States and Canada.

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