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Western Financial Group Announces Acquisition of Major Victoria Insurance Brokerage

For Immediate Release

High River, Alberta – May 17, 2012 – Western Financial Group (“Western”) is proud to announce the acquisition today of Hodges & Company Insurance Services Ltd., a highly experienced full service insurance broker specializing in the commercial insurance marketplace. Hodges & Company is headquartered in Victoria, British Columbia, and is Western’s first acquisition in the fast-growing B.C. capital.

Owned and operated by Steve Hodges, Hodges & Company has been in business since 1965. The company will continue to operate with the same friendly staff under the Western Financial Group banner from its same location of the past 26 years, 2950 Douglas Street.

“As Victoria continues to grow, so do we,” said Hodges. “By joining Western’s expansive network with its wider variety of insurers, insurance products and financial services, we will build the best possible client relationships and provide our customers with great insurance at more competitive premiums.”

Western will build on Hodges & Company’s reputation for local, friendly client service in an urban environment. Current and future customers will benefit from Western’s large scale and breadth, and its dedication to delivering value.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Steve, his team, and the beautiful city of Victoria to our growing Western network,” said Scott Tannas, President and CEO of Western Financial Group. “As we enter the BC capital for the first time, we look forward to offering Steve's customers more services at competitive prices.”

“Victoria is such a famous west coast city, with a wonderful history. Its natural beauty is synonymous with British Columbia. After establishing Western in other parts of the province, it is truly exciting to see our name in the capital. With such rapid growth in this area, we promise to grow along with the city, and be the best insurance broker we can be for the people of Victoria.”

About Western Financial Group

Western Financial Group is a western Canada based, diversified, financial services company serving more than 600,000 customers. Founded in 1996 and headquartered in High River, Alberta, Western provides insurance, banking and investment products and services through more than 120 office locations, the Internet (www.westernfinancialgroup.ca) and other distribution channels. With a skilled team of approximately 1,500 employees, and backed by the strong resources of its owners, Western is committed to building the strongest financial services company in western Canada.

Western Financial Group is a subsidiary of Desjardins Group, the leading cooperative financial group in Canada.

This press release is not for distribution to any United States news service or otherwise in the United States.


For further information, please contact:
James Savage
Executive Vice President
Corporate Communications and Brand Marketing
Western Financial Group
403-652-2663 x338