Business Moves

February 8, 2021


World Insurance Associates,

The Watts Group

World Insurance Associates LLC has acquired The Watts Group LLC of West Hartford, Conn.

Founded in 2003 by Mike Watts, The Watts Group is a surety bond and property/casualty agency serving the New England region.

WIA is headquartered in Tinton Falls, N.J., and is a full-service insurance brokerage providing asset and lifestyle protection with risk management, insurance and benefit consulting services for individuals and businesses. Since its founding in 2012, WIA has completed 85 acquisitions and serves its customers from 71 offices in 16 states.

Giordano, Halleran & Ciesla provided legal counsel to WIA. Andros, Floyd & Miller provided legal counsel to The Watts Group. No other advisors, diligence firms or legal counsel were disclosed.

Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.,

Cool Insuring Agency

Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. has acquired Queensbury, N.Y.-based Cool Insuring Agency Inc.

Founded in 1857, Cool Insuring Agency provides commercial, personal, life and health insurance and consulting services to clients across the Northeastern U.S. from offices in Queensbury and Latham.

The agency specializes in serving construction and healthcare industry clients, as well as governments and municipalities, which together account for more than half of its revenues.

Cool Insuring Agency President Anthony Mashuta and Ira Neifeld, senior vice president, director and principal, and their associates will continue to operate from their current locations under the direction of Patrick Kennedy, head of Gallagher’s Northeast Region retail property/casualty brokerage operations, and Tom Belmont Jr., head of Gallagher’s Atlantic Region employee benefit consulting and brokerage operations.

Arthur J. Gallagher & Co., a global insurance brokerage, risk management and consulting services firm, is headquartered in Rolling Meadows, Ill.


World Insurance Associates,

Two Rivers Insurance

World Insurance Associates LLC has acquired Two Rivers Insurance Co. Inc. of Burlington, Iowa.

TRIC includes Two Rivers Insurance Services (TRIS) and Employee Benefits Systems.

TRIC will continue to be headquartered in Burlington, Iowa, and will continue to offer insurance from its offices in Ft. Madison, Earlham and West Des Moines. Todd Ackerman will continue as president and CEO.

World Insurance Associates LLC is headquartered in Tinton Falls, N.J.

First MainStreet, Nissen-Caven Insurance, Tyler Insurance Services

First MainStreet Insurance, an affiliate of TrueNorth Companies, has acquired two Iowa-based agencies: Nissen-Caven Insurance and Tyler Insurance Services.

Nissen-Caven Insurance joined FMSI on Nov. 1, 2020. Since 1925, Nissen-Caven has been providing insurance products to the people of Maquoketa, Iowa and surrounding areas.

Nissen-Caven’s staff of three remain fully intact and will eventually join FMSI’s Engel Agency, also located in Maquoketa. Combining both agencies gives FMSI increased market share in Jackson County and bench strength to add more right fit-clients in the surrounding area.

FMSI acquired Tyler Insurance Services, effective Dec. 31, 2020. With two offices in Creston and Mt. Ayr, Iowa, Tyler Insurance has been a part of the community for over 50 years.

Owned and operated by Phil Tyler for 27 years, Tyler Insurance brings insurance solutions to Southwest Iowa. Coming into the partnership on this new entity is Devon Tyler-Leith. Tyler-Leith’s role ensures that this FMSI location will remain a local and family run agency.

The Hilb Group, Owen Moore Insurance

The Hilb Group LLC acquired Linwood, Michigan-based Owen Moore Insurance Agency (OMA) in a transaction that was effective Dec. 31, 2020.

OMA is a full-service property/casualty agency, providing a broad range of personal and commercial insurance products and services to individuals and businesses.

As a part of the transaction, Randal Moore and his team will join the THG’s Midwest region.

THG is a property/casualty and employee benefits insurance brokerage and advisory firm headquartered in Richmond, Virginia. THG is a portfolio company of The Carlyle Group, a global investment firm.

South Central

Hub International,

Commercial Insurance Brokers

Global insurance broker Hub International Limited has acquired the assets of Commercial Insurance Brokers Inc., based in El Paso, Texas.

Commercial Insurance Brokers is a locally owned, independent insurance agency that provides commercial and personal insurance solutions.

Ken Foster, president of Commercial Insurance Brokers, and vice presidents Maggie Foster, Richie Grodin and Martha Ramirez, will join Hub Texas and report to Don Margo, president of Hub Texas in El Paso.

Upland Capital Group, Newlight Partners

Upland Capital Group, a Dallas-based specialty insurance business led by long-time insurance and investment executives, has opened for business.

Upland is funded through an equity investment of up to $200 million from Newlight Partners LP, a growth equity investor, and an additional investment from the company’s executive management team.

Upland offers a diversified portfolio of excess and surplus lines casualty, property and specialty insurance products.


Constellation Affiliated Partners, INSUREtrust

Constellation Affiliated Partners has acquired INSUREtrust, a specialty wholesale broker and managing general agency (MGA) headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia.

INSUREtrust, founded by Steve Haase in 1997, is a specialty wholesale broker and MGA, distributing cyber liability, technology errors and omissions and miscellaneous professional liability coverages.

The INSUREtrust has also promoted Christiaan Durdaller to president and CEO. Durdaller will take over for CEO and

Founder Steve Haase in his retirement from INSUREtrust. Durdaller will continue to oversee the strategy, company products, partnership and production.

Bill Goldstein, CEO of Constellation, said INSUREtrust’s team of brokers and underwriters and its development of technology to drive business were driving forces behind the new partnership.

Durdaller said the new partnership with Constellation will allow INSUREtrust to broaden its technology enabled products and continue to develop its risk management platform.

Marsh Berry & Co was exclusive advisor to the seller.

Constellation Affiliated Partners is a New York-based insurance consolidator platform that specializes in acquiring MGA, program administrator and wholesale companies in the U.S. and Canada.

The Hilb Group, Dwayne Wilson

The Hilb Group LLC has acquired North Carolina-based Dwayne Wilson Insurance & Financial Services Inc. The transaction became effective on Dec. 31, 2020.

DWI is a full-service life and health agency, providing a range of insurance products and advisory services to employer groups and individuals.

As a part of the transaction, Dwayne Wilson and his team will join the Hilb Southeast region.

THG is a property/casualty and employee benefits insurance brokerage and advisory firm headquartered in Richmond, Virginia. It is a portfolio company of The Carlyle Group, a global investment firm.

Hub International, MPE Employee Benefit Services, Shields Insurance Agency

HUB International Limited, a global insurance broker, has acquired the assets of MPE Employee Benefit Services.

Located in Ridgeland, Miss., MPE Employee Benefit Services is a third-party administrator providing administration services and employee benefit plan design and solutions to employers throughout the Southeast.

MPE Employment Benefit Services President Bill Saint Sing will join Hub Gulf South, and report to Shaun Norris, president of the region.

In a separate transaction, Hub International Limited has acquired the assets of Shields Insurance Agency.

With locations in Birmingham and Mobile, Alabama, Shields Insurance Agency is independently owned and provides services for clients’ specific insurance needs, including personal and business.

Shields Insurance Agency CEO Bry Shields will join Hub Gulf South, and report to Shaun Norris, president of the region.

Headquartered in Chicago, Hub International Limited provides risk management, insurance, employee benefits, retirement and wealth management products and services.

Purmort & Martin Insurance Agency,

Jeff DeJohng and Associates

Sarasota, Florida-based Purmort & Martin Insurance Agency, a locally owned insurance agency, has acquired Jeff DeJongh and Associates to further expand its presence in the region.

Located in Sarasota, Florida, Jeff DeJongh and Associates is a property/casualty insurance agency that serves Hillsborough, Manatee, Pinellas and Sarasota Counties.

Jeff DeJongh, who has more than 18 years of sales and management experience in the insurance, financial services and medical and dental device professions, will join Purmort & Martin Insurance Agency as the vice president of sales.

Jeff DeJongh and Associates’ three staff members will join the 26 other sales professionals in Purmort & Martin Insurance Agency’s Sarasota office.

Purmort & Martin Insurance Agency has been a part of the local community since 1959. It employs more than 25 full-time insurance professionals.


Alera Group, CSNW Benefits

Alera Group has acquired CSNW Benefits in Portland, Oregon.

The CSNW Benefits team will continue serving clients in their existing roles.

CSNW Benefits serves clients throughout the Northwest region, creating employee benefits and retirement services plans. The firm serves clients in a variety of industries, with specific vertical expertise in manufacturing and non-profits.

Deerfield, Illinois-based Alera Group serves clients nationally in employee benefits, property/casualty, retirement services and wealth management.

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Insurance Journal West February 8, 2021
February 8, 2021
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