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BOSTON-Locally-based Eastern Bank acquired Fantini & Gorga Inc. a Boston-based commercial mortgage and real estate investment banking firm. In a released statement, the bank says the move will strengthen its place in the Greater Boston commercial real estate market.

Eastern purchased a majority interest in Fantini & Gorga but terms of the deal were not disclosed. Eastern will merge Fantini & Gorga into its own commercial-mortgage operation, creating Fantini & Gorga/iCap Realty Advisors. Last February, Eastern helped create iCap Realty Advisors LLC, a commercial-mortgage firm that operates in 20 markets nationally.

George J. Fantini Jr. will continue as chairman of Fantini & Gorga/iCap Realty Advisors, while John Gorga will still serve as president. The new operation will be located at Fantini & Gorga’s current offices at 150 Federal St. here.

In the first six months of 2001, Eastern’s iCap Realty unit closed $60 million in equity and debt placement for commercial clients. Nationally, iCap has closed more than $1 billion during that period. Eastern Bank is a $3.6 billion full-service banking company with 46 offices in Eastern Massachusetts.

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