Business Moves

Montana Auditor Adds Two Companies in Captive Insurance Market

Montana State Auditor John Morrison has announced the formation of two new Montana companies approved to provide insurance in the captive insurance market.

The State Insurance Department has licensed MHA Worker’s Compensation Reciprocal Insurance Co. and Eadonton Insurance Co. as captive insurance companies. The new captives will insure the risks of several Montana hospitals and a California construction company.

According to the Auditor’s office, Montana is aggressively pursuing captive insurance business. Currently, there are 12 captive insurance companies in the state that insure rural hospitals, nursing homes, fuel stations, commercial trucking firms, investment firms, medical professional firms, construction companies and attorneys. Additionally, three captive management companies and the Rocky Mountain Captive Insurance Association have formed in Montana.

Morrison’s goal is to make Montana the leading captive domicile in the West.

“The captive insurance industry is the type of business I have been working to encourage in Montana to help diversify our economic base,” he said. “I am confident Montana’s infrastructure and laws will attract other businesses wishing to take advantage of this opportunity.”

Cambridge General Agency Opens Central California Office

Paul Janofsky, executive vice president of Cambridge General Agency, announced the company has opened its fifth branch office in California. Cambridge General is a licensed surplus lines brokerage, managing general agency and specialty insurance wholesaler. The newest addition is in the Fresno area. The office is accepting submissions from independent agents and brokers.

Nancy Jones is manager of the new office. Melissa Burgers also has joined the office as underwriter.

The office is located at 3134 Willow Ave. Ste. 101, Clovis, CA 93612. For more information contact Nancy Jones at (800) 670-4030 ext. 221 or visit www.cambridge

Complete Insurance Employees Take Majority Interest in Firm

Complete Insurance Inc., Irvine, Calif., has announced its successful transition to an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) company. As of Nov. 1, 2005, employees of Complete Insurance now own a majority interest in the firm.

The transaction will allow Chairman Steven Berg-Hansen to perpetuate the firm and preserve corporate independence, according to the company.

ESOP is an employee benefit plan that allows the employees of the company stock ownership at no cost. Employee participants in the ESOP do not pay for the employer stock. Instead, they earn stock through vesting. Employees are eligible to receive the cash value of their vested shares upon retirement, termination, disability or death. The plan creates additional financial security for employees by supplementing Social Security and other retirement plans.

Complete Insurance Inc. is an insurance brokerage firm providing property and liability, employee benefits and workers’ compensation solutions to regional, national and international clients.

Unigard Earns 2005 Award

For the third consecutive year, Wash-ington-based Unigard Insurance Group has earned an Ease of Doing Business award from Applied Systems and its user group, Applied Systems Client Network (ASCnet). The award recognizes Unigard’s efforts to advance agency-company interface in commercial and personal lines of business.

Unigard was one of 16 companies commended in 2005 for initiatives that provide agents and brokers standardized workflows for managing multi-company insurance sales, service and renewals directly from within their agency management systems. Awards were recently presented at ASCnet’s 20th annual Technology, Education and Networking Conference.

Unigard Insurance Group is a multi-line, property and casualty insurer that was established in 1901. It operates in the seven western states of Arizona, California, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah and Washington and maintains local branch offices throughout the region.

ASU International Changes Name to HCC Specialty Underwriters

ASU International Inc. (ASU), a specialty underwriting agency subsidiary of HCC Insurance Holdings Inc., has announced that it has changed its name to HCC Specialty Underwriters Inc.

William F. Hubbard, CEO of HCC Specialty, said, “We have been part of the HCC Group for four years since their acquisition of ASU in October 2001, and we are excited about taking the group name to help promote our business.”

Founded in January 1982 as ASU International, HCC Specialty Underwriters is noted for non-traditional disability insurance products for professional athletes, entertainers and high-profile individuals in the business world. The company also is a provider of contingency insurance products for the entertainment, sports industries and promotion marketing industries. In addition, the company provides risk management services to agencies and firms that design and execute sweepstakes, games and contests.

HCC Specialty Underwriters expanded into the entertainment industry by acquiring feature film bonding company CineFinance Insurance Services LLC in December 2004 and by forming HCC Specialty Underwriters Agency of NY Inc., a provider of property casualty insurance products to the entertainment industry in January 2005.

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