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Sears leaving Yorkdale & Square One malls

Sears Canada is leaving two major malls in the Toronto area – and may soon be leaving a third.

The retailer is selling its leases at Yorkdale and Mississauga’s Square One Shopping Centre back to the property owners for $191 million.

The malls are co-owned by Oxford Properties Group and Alberta Investment Management Corp.

Sears has to leave the malls by next March.

The Yorkdale store has been in business since 1991, while the Mississauga location has been open since 1973.

Meanwhile, Sears also sold the option to sell its lease at the Scarborough Town Centre for $1 million. The landlords have five years to decide whether to exercise that option. If they do, Sears will get $53 million. The Scarborough store opened in 1991.

Employees at the affected stores will be offered jobs at other Sears locations in the GTA, the company said.

Sears Canada is one of the country’s largest retailers, operating 181 department stores and more than 1,400 merchandise pick-up locations.