One of Canada's best-known furniture retailers is trying to buy up a high-profile rival. Leon's Furniture Limited is offering to buy The Brick Ltd. in a deal the company values at $700 million.

The offer is subject to approval by Brick shareholders and will need court and regulatory approval.

Leon's says it will pay $5.40 per share in either cash or debentures -- the closing price on Brick shares on the TSX on Friday was $3.50.

It hopes to close the deal in the first quarter of 2013.

Leon's says in a news release that if shareholders accept the offer, the two chains will continue to operate as separate entities.

The deal will strengthen Leon's position in the home furnishing marketplace, said Leon's CEO Terry Leon in a release.

"During these economic times where we have seen multiple American corporations make inroads in our country through acquisitions, it is a pleasure to see two successful Canadian retailers reach such an agreement that will better serve Canadian consumers."

"Our combined team will have access to national buying opportunities in merchandising and marketing, and a national distribution network that will enable us to greatly enhance our online shopping capabilities."

Leon's, headquartered in Toronto has 76 stores with locations in every province except British Columbia.

The Brick, which is based in Edmonton, has 230 stores operating under The Brick, United Furniture Warehouse, The Brick Mattress Store and Urban Brick banners.