For Immediate Release - May 22, 2008

Commissioner Burnes Approves Mapfre, S.A. Acquisition of

Cites Mapfre's commitment to maintaining local jobs, using Webster insurer as base for U.S. expansion

BOSTON - May 22, 2008 - Commissioner of Insurance Nonnie S. Burnes today approved the acquisition of Commerce Insurance Company by the Spanish insurance company Mapfre, S.A. The Commissioner's decision follows a public hearing held at the Division of Insurance on May 1, 2008.

The approval will allow Mapfre, one of the largest insurance companies in Spain, to acquire all of the outstanding common stock of the Commerce Insurance Company for $2.2 billion. Mapfre is located in Madrid and also has insurance operations in Turkey, the Philippines and throughout Latin America. The Commerce Group, headquartered in Webster, is the largest writer of property and casualty insurance in the Commonwealth. The boards of both companies, and the majority of their shareholders, previously approved the acquisition.

State law required Commissioner Burnes to approve the merger unless it was shown that doing so would negatively affect Commerce or insurance consumers. A review by the Division of Insurance found that Mapfre's entry does not raise anti-competitive concerns and that Commerce will retain ample capital to meet its obligations to its policyholders.

Mapfre has repeatedly committed to maintaining Commerce's current management structure, employees and headquarters in Webster. Commerce is the town's top employer, with 1,900 workers. After the merger, Mapfre executives indicated they plan to use Commerce as the "foundation for the growth of our insurance business in the U.S." The companies anticipate that the acquisition will be closed in the next couple of months.