Target acquires Zellers chain

Fate of Greater Victoria’s stores yet to be determined

Target, the popular American department store, may soon be making an appearance locally after the Hudson’s Bay Company announced last week a $1.8 billion deal to sell Zellers.

As part of the deal, Target plans to open between 100 and 150 of its stores across Canada by 2014. As well, the retailer plans to rebrand certain Zellers locations under the Target banner.

“The sale … is estimated to create over 20,000 net new jobs in Canada and has the potential to generate over $1.5 billion in Canadian economic activity through the renovation of the Zellers locations,” stated an HBC press release.

Freda Colbourne, spokeswoman for Zellers, said Target will spend the next 12 months planning how it wants to enter the Canadian market.

“During that time Target’s going to determine which locations are going to become a Target store, which locations may be sold to another retailer and which locations will remain a Zellers store,” she said.

“We intend to continue to have a division of Zellers – it will just be smaller.”

Nobody at the Tillicum Centre or Hillside Centre Zellers locations could comment on the deal.

The chain has been operational in Canada since the early 1930s, when Water P. Zeller purchased 14 Schulte-United stores and transformed them into Zellers.

There are 279 Zellers stores across Canada employing 10,000 full-time and 18,000 part-time workers. The deal allows Target to take control of 220 locations.