Arbella Mutual Expands to N.H. and Conn. Commercial Lines Markets

The Arbella Insurance Group said it has received regulatory approval to offer commercial insurance policies in New Hampshire and Connecticut, doubling the number of New England states where the Massachusetts-based insurer sells commercial insurance.

Arbella will begin selling commercial auto, property, liability, workers compensation and other commercial lines on July 1 through its existing independent agents in Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut.

Arbella said it intends to eventually build a force of locally based independent agents in those states.

The company writes personal and business insurance in Massachusetts, business insurance in Rhode Island, and personal
insurance in Connecticut. It is the third-largest seller of personal auto insurance in Massachusetts, where it is now competing under a new managed competition system.

Nearly 20 percent of Arbella’s overall business comes from commercial insurance products and it is a market that is growing.

“We’re pleased with the strength of our commercial lines and it’s clear that there’s great opportunity for us to expand those products and reach out to the thriving small and medium-sized businesses in New Hampshire and Connecticut,” said John Donohue, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Arbella.

“We know these states and we know Main Street businesses value the personal, individual service that we offer,” said Douglas R. Jones, president and chief executive officer of Arbella’s commercial insurance companies.

Arbella Insurance Group is a $674 million company headquartered in Quincy, Mass. Arbella reported $441 million in surplus as of December 2007. The company’s combined ratio was 97.5 percent and its underwriting profit for 2007 was $33 million.

Sales of personal insurance products during 2007 were $505.8 million and represented 78 percent of the company’s direct written premium.
Its commercial lines products, including commercial and fleet auto coverage, commercial multi-peril, and business owners protection and workers’ compensation, generated $140.5 million in sales in 2007.

It markets some of its homeowners products in Massachusetts under its affiliate Commonwealth Mutual and personal auto in Connecticut under the name Covenant Insurance.

Source: Arbella