WASHINGTON - The student loan provider Sallie Mae has agreed to buy Student Loan Funding Resources Inc. from the Thomas L. Conlan Education Foundation for $117.3 million.

The deal, which is to close by June 30 subject to regulatory approval, would make Cincinnati-based Student Loan Funding Resources the eighth-largest holder of federal student loans and a wholly owned subsidiary of Sallie Mae.

"This transaction immediately adds a significant portfolio of high-quality student loans to our balance sheet and strengthens our loan origination franchise on campus," said Albert L. Lord, vice chairman and CEO of Sallie Mae.

As with Sallie Mae's acquisition of Nellie Mae last May, the deal fits a plan to acquire regional loan originators, a spokeswoman said.

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