UnionBanCal Corporation announced that UBOC Insurance Inc., a unit of its Union Bank of California, N.A., subsidiary, has acquired Pleasanton, Calif.-based Tanner Insurance Brokers Inc., one of the largest full-service independent brokerages of property and casualty insurance products in California. The deal closed on March 31, 2003.
The acquisition is part of the bank’s strategy to provide added value to its commercial customers by offering a broader range of business and financial services. It marks the third insurance agency acquisition for Union Bank, following the purchase last December of San Diego’s John Burnham Insurance Services, and the Nov. 2001 purchase of Fullerton, Calif.-based Armstrong/Robitaille Business and Insurance Services.
Tanner has grown rapidly in recent years, largely by focusing on highly profitable, middle-market commercial companies and several industry niche groups. The company writes annual premiums of approximately $250 million.
“Tanner Insurance Brokers is truly a complementary partner for us because of their expertise in meeting the insurance and risk management needs of small and mid-sized companies,” said Richard C. Hartnack, vice chairman of Union Bank of California. “Their market niche, which includes such industries as manufacturing, distribution, and wholesale/retail, is quite compatible with our client base.”
Tanner will operate as a subsidiary of UBOC Insurance Inc., and will retain its name. It currently employs 87 people at its office in Pleasanton. The entire senior management team is expected to remain with the company.
“This acquisition is especially important because it marks our first entree into Northern California, which will be significant to our commercial and retail customers in that region,” said Dale Jansen, Union Bank’s senior vice president and head of the bank’s insurance subsidiary. “Following our earlier acquisitions in the southern part of the state, our market penetration is now virtually statewide.”
“We are fortunate to have found such a strong financial partner as Union Bank, whose proven focus is to provide outstanding service and financial products to their customers,” said Steve Tanner, president and CEO of Tanner Insurance Brokers. “They are truly one of the leading and most respected financial institutions in California, and our relationship will create significant new opportunities for both our clients and our employees. In short, they are the perfect strategic partner.”