ATLANTA - First Financial Management Corp., a provider of a wide range of banking-related processing services, has agreed to acquire Employee Benefit Plans Inc.

The acquisition, which awaits approval from EBP shareholders and certain regulators, will cost FFMC about $125 million in stock, based on current share prices.

Based in Minneapolis, EBP is a publicly traded managed-care organization that had $237.1 million in revenue in 1994.

FFMC already provides a number of services to the health care industry through its First Health operating unit.

"The purchase of EBP reinforces and expands our leading position in the employee benefits area," said Patrick H. Thomas, chairman, president, and chief executive officer of First Financial.

"The addition of EBP significantly increases FFMC's critical mass in this area and increases the utilization of our new software processing platform."

Mr. Thomas also reiterated First Financial's commitment to being a major provider of health care claims processing and cost management services.

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