Desjardins Financial Group, a Canada-based cooperative financial group, has entered an agreement to acquire Western Financial Group, for $439m.

Western Financial Group is an insurance and financial services retailer in Western Canada with 121 offices in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. It offers property, liability and life insurance as well as banking and investment services.

Desjardins Financial Group chairman of the board, president and CEO Monique Leroux said that this transaction will allow Desjardins to accelerate business development in Western Canada , and in that way, it is perfectly aligned with the company’s strategic plan.

Western Financial Group founding president and CEO Scott Tannas said that the acquisition by the Desjardins Financial Group, a rapidly expanding and innovative winner in Canadian financial services, will serve the interests of Western Financial’s shareholders, customers, employees and communities.

"Our staff can rest assured that, by keeping our distinctive Western brand and by maintaining our headquarters here in High River, we will have even greater opportunities to expand our market share as we benefit from being part of the Desjardins Financial Group," Tannas said.

The transactions is subject to approval and it is expected to close in the second quarter of 2011.