BRATTLEBORO — A regional insurance agency acquired a Vermont firm this week and is in the process of combining with a company in Keene.

The Richards Group bought out Bourdon Insurance Agency in Middlebury, Vt., Tuesday. Bourdon employees joined The Richards Group and moved to its office at 94 Court St. in Middlebury.

Headquartered in Brattleboro, The Richards Group has more than 130 employees in 12 branches. The firm offers insurance, retirement plans and employee benefits, as well as consulting services for safety, wellness and human resources.

John Round, president of IPG Employee Benefits in Keene, confirmed Thursday IPG and The Richards Group have signed a letter of intent to combine the companies.

He expects the merger to be final this fall, he said, and while details are still being determined, Round said he doesn’t anticipate any staffing changes. He also said The Richards Group would likely move its Keene employees to IPG’s office at 85 Washington St.

Round said he’s excited for the merger because it works well for both companies, their clients and the community, underscoring the importance of keeping the business local.

Round took the reins at IPG in June — after 23 years with the firm — from Walter H. Rohr, who launched the Keene-based employee-benefits firm in 1985.

Sierra Hubbard can be reached at 355-8546 or at shubbard@keenesentinel.com. Follow her on Twitter at @SierraHubbardKS.