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Eastern Insurance acquires Hokanson Insurance Agency
Brokerage expands employee benefits offerings for clients
 
NATICK, Mass., Nov. 15, 2007—Eastern Insurance Group, one of the largest insurance agencies in New England, recently acquired Hokanson Insurance Agency, Inc. DBA Employee Benefit Administrators (EBA), of Hanover, a respected leader in the Massachusetts benefits marketplace.

The acquisition adds one of the largest and most accomplished employee benefits practices in Massachusetts to Eastern Insurance, enabling it to better serve its clients. The EBA brokerage team serves more than 400 clients and represents more than $100 million in premium. The agency is staffed with 13 well-trained, service-oriented insurance professionals with extensive benefits experience.

“We’re pleased to be expanding our employee benefits business with the EBA team, which is known for outstanding service and expertise in this area,” said Michael Ward, executive vice president and head of Eastern Benefits Group. “Customers will greatly benefit from additional services, and the EBA team can expand its reach through Eastern Insurance’s network of more than 20 offices.”

EBA will continue to operate under its current name through Dec. 31 during the transition. The acquisition will be seamless for EBA customers. The EBA team has already merged with Eastern Benefits Group, expanding Eastern’s outstanding life and health sales and service team south of Boston.

Herbert Hokanson, Jr. founded the Hokanson Insurance Agency in 1992 with Kevin Hokanson and was later joined by Scott Hokanson and Brian Charon.

“The two companies hold firmly to the same standards and values in customer service and satisfaction, which made this deal particularly attractive to us,” said Kevin Hokanson. “We also have the same vision for the future: to continue to offer our clients the very best in employee benefits options. Additionally, we can now offer our clients many more products and services.”

Employee Benefit Administrators has an exceptional reputation in the insurance industry, maintaining expertise in employee benefits brokerage and serving as a managing general underwriter (MGU) for Stop Loss Insurance for self-funded health plans.

About Eastern Insurance (www.easterninsurance.com)
Eastern Insurance, headquartered in Natick, is a subsidiary of Eastern Bank, the largest independent, mutually owned bank in New England with branches stretching from Merrimack Valley to Cape Cod. Eastern Insurance serves more than 65,000 individuals and businesses and provides a full range of personal and commercial insurance products, surety, and employee benefits services, including group health and life insurance and 401(k) administration.

For more information, contact: Andrew Ravens, Public Relations, Eastern Bank,(781) 598-8528, or e-mail Andrew Ravens.