Upscale department store chain Saks Incorporated shareholders has approved the previously announced agreement and plan of merger with Hudson’s Bay (HBC).

The merger will create a premier North American fashion retail business centered on three iconic retail brands – Hudson’s Bay, Lord & Taylor and Saks Fifth Avenue.

The combined entity will operate a total of 320 stores, including 179 full-line department stores, 72 outlet stores and 69 home stores in prime retail locations throughout the U.S. and Canada, along with three e-commerce sites.

Both the companies anticipate the transaction to close on 4 November 2013.

HBC’s Governor and CEO Richard Baker said with the addition of Saks Fifth Avenue, an exciting new era for HBC will begin.

"By uniting Saks, Hudson’s Bay and Lord & Taylor, we are creating a platform built upon three brands with a rich heritage in retailing.

"We will be well positioned to serve customers across a range of shopping experiences, including the luxury, mid-tier and outlet categories. We plan to invest in the growth potential of each brand and category," Baker added.

Further, HBC stated that it intends to expand the Saks’ banner to Canada, opening as many as seven full-line Saks Fifth Avenue stores, and up to 25 OFF 5TH outlet locations over the next several years.

In addition, the company is looking to expand Saks’ e-commerce presence in Canada by establishing a Canadian website.

HBC will also continue Saks’ existing plans to further expand the OFF 5TH footprint in the US.