MINNEAPOLIS, July 12 (UPI) -- U.S. discount retailer Target confirmed its plans Thursday to begin opening at least 125 stores in Canada beginning in the spring.
In a release from its Minneapolis headquarters, the company said the store openings across Canada would begin in March and continue through 2014.
Many of the stores will be refurbished sites of Zellers stores. In January, Target negotiated a $1.8 billion deal to acquire 220 Zellers leases from the parent Hudson's Bay Co. Target said it would sell off the leases it didn't intend to convert.
The confirmation of the store openings follows a Canadian Cabinet ruling last week that said Target must commit to investing $3.5-billion by 2015, which includes hiring as many as 25,000 people.
Tony Fisher, president of Target Canada, said each site will be closed for a period of six to nine months for renovations and more than $10 million will be spent remodeling each location.
"Construction has already begun on our first set of stores and we are excited to see the transformation as the Target brand comes to life in Canada," he said.