Business Moves

July 23, 2007

Edgewood Partners, Calco Insurance

Edgewood Partners Insurance Center, a California retail property and casualty and benefits insurance brokerage firm announced an agreement in principle has been reached with Calco Holdings Inc. to acquire Calco Insurance Brokers and Agents Inc. to serve as the initial operating platform to launch a statewide insurance brokerage firm.

Calco has revenue of approximately $13 million and maintains offices in three key areas of the state, including San Mateo, Orange and Sacramento.

The company has a history of niche marketing through affinity groups, program business and trade organizations, including the American Electronics Association. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Edgewood was formed by John G. Hahn and Dan F. Francis, along with Trident IV L.P., a private equity fund managed by Stone Point Capital. The company said it expects to add several additional operating platforms by year-end.

Hub, Steel City Agency

Hub International Ltd. has purchased Pueblo, Colorado-based Steel City Agency. SCA’s four offices in Colorado will expand the presence of Hub International Southwest to the Colorado Springs, Pueblo and Trinidad areas.

SCA focuses on manufacturing, construction, service and municipal clients, as well as risk management services to both commercial and personal insurance clients and customers.

Among the agency’s executives, Ralph Williams and Jerry Thomas will continue in leadership roles, as will Dennis Flores.

Transaction terms were not disclosed.

Farmers Insurance Group, Bristol West

Los Angeles-based Farmers Insurance Group has completed its acquisition of non-standard auto insurer, Bristol West Holdings Inc., based in Davie, Fla.

Farmers officials described the acquisition as a “great fit” that will enable the company with its overall business growth. Bristol West has been providing nonstandard, private passenger auto insurance to Florida residents since 1973. Since that time, it has grown to provide liability and physical damage insurance as well, operating in 26 states.

Colemont-Southern California

Colemont Insurance Brokers-Southern California has created a new workers’ compensation division, and added Blake Baker to lead the division from its Woodland Hills, Calif., office.

Baker is a workers’ compensation specialty broker with more than 20 years of experience in the industry.

Symetra Financial

Bellevue, Wash.-based Symetra Financial Corp. said it filed for an initial public offering of common shares. The shares will be offered by existing stockholders.

The IPO expects to raise up to $750 million, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Symetra is owned by investors led by White Mountains Insurance Group Ltd. and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. The company provides insurance, retirement and other services.

Merrill Lynch & Co., Goldman, Sachs & Co., JPMorgan and Lehman Brothers are underwriters for the IPO.

The shares will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “SYA.”

Copyright 2007 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

KPD Insurance, USI Northwest-Oregon, Liberty Northwest Awards

Portland, Ore.-based USI Northwest-Oregon and Springfield, Ore.-based KPD Insurance Inc. have received Liberty Northwest’s 2006 Chairman’s Award, which is presented to the highest performing insurance agencies appointed with Liberty Northwest, a member of Liberty Mutual Group’s Agency Markets business unit.

KPD Insurance President Jim Ginger and USI’s Executive Vice President Jon Sandstrom accepted their agency’s Chairman’s Award during meetings held in July in Kauai, Hawaii. KPD Insurance and USI Northwest-Oregon were recognized for their superior results during 2006. Liberty Northwest recognizes its highest performing agencies with the Chairman’s Award when an agency achieves size, growth and loss ratio goals.

“The sustained growth and consistently high profitability required to achieve this exclusive recognition reflects the contribution that KPD Insurance and USI Northwest-Oregon make to our mutual success and affirms our commitment to building strong relationships at the local level,” said Larry W. Becker, president and chief CEO, Liberty Northwest.

Swiss Re

Swiss Re has signed the United Nations’ Principles for Responsible Investment (UN PRI). The voluntary program encourages best practice in environmental, social and corporate governance issues in investments. The reinsurer said that by adhering to the PRI, it “expands its commitment to sustainability considerations in investment decision making.”

Benjamin Meuli, Swiss Re’s Chief Investment Officer commented: “Signing the UN PRI is a natural development of our growing conviction that environmental, social and governance related considerations should provide material input to our investment decisions. It therefore supports Swiss Re’s commitment to sustainable value creation.”

The UN PRI’s six underlying principles are to:

1. Incorporate ESG issues into investment analysis and decision-making processes.

2. Be active owners and incorporate ESG issues into ownership policies and practices.

3. Seek appropriate disclosure on ESG issues by the entities in which we invest.

4. Promote acceptance and implementation of the principles within the investment industry.

5. Work together to enhance effectiveness in implementing the principles.

6. Report each on activities and progress toward implementing the principles.

The principles that the signatories sign up to were first formulated in 2005, when the UN Secretary-General “invited a group of the world’s largest institutional investors to join a process to develop the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI),” Swiss Re noted. Individuals representing 20 institutional investors from 12 countries agreed to participate in the Investor Group. The Group accepted ownership of the principles, and had the freedom to develop them as they saw fit. The United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) Finance Initiative and the UN Global Compact oversee and coordinate the initiative.

Was this article valuable?

Here are more articles you may enjoy.

From This Issue

Insurance Journal West July 23, 2007
July 23, 2007
Insurance Journal West Magazine

2007 Excess, Surplus and Specialty Markets Directory, Vol. II; 2nd Quarter Market Survey