Sears executives to get big retention bonuses

While employees are laid off without severance, 43 executives and senior managers at Sears Canada will split up to $7.6 million dollars in retention bonus.

Sears Canada announced in June that it planned to close 59 locations across the country and cut approximately 2,900 jobs as part of a restructuring.

The company defends the bonuses, telling the CBC that they are common and necessary during a restructuring, in order to hold on to key employees.

Meanwhile, Sears has been given the green light to begin reaching out to potential buyers while it's under creditor protection.

Ontario Superior Court Justice Glenn Hainey approved the motion for the sale and investor solicitation process Thursday, following hours of discussions between lawyers representing the company, its lenders and retirees and laid-off employees.

According to the decision, the national retailer and its court-ordered monitor, FTI Consulting Inc., can select one or more successful bids by Oct. 25.

In separate documents filed by Sears Canada's lawyers prior to Thursday's hearing, the retailer's chief financial officer said it's ``crucial'' to begin liquidation sales of inventory no later than July 21 and to complete them by Oct. 12. Hainey is expected to hear that motion Tuesday.

With files from the Canadian Press