Plymouth Rock Assurance Corporation (PRAC) is entering the New York insurance market with its acquisition of 21st Century National Insurance Company (National). PRAC previously brought its insurance portfolio to Pennsylvania in August of last year.
This comes after the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) approved an application by PRAC and Plymouth Rock Group of Companies to acquire National from certain Farmers Insurance Group affiliates.
“As a native New Yorker, I’ve wanted to bring our company to New York for a very long time,” said Hal Belodoff, president of the Plymouth Rock Group of Companies, in a company press release.
National is a property and casualty insurance company domiciled in New York and licensed in 40 states. The 21st Century Companies are members of the Farmers Insurance Group of companies and use their employee agents to sell and service their products. In 2017, gross written premium was $603 million.
With annual revenues of $1.3 billion, Massachusetts-based Plymouth Rock Group of Companies offers auto and home insurance in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Following the acquisition, National is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of PRAC, with Plymouth Rock Company Incorporated as the ultimate controlling entity. PRAC will reinsure and service the remaining New York in-force business of two of National’s former affiliates as part of the transaction.
Under the terms of the acquisition agreements, PRAC is required to re-name National following a transitional period, National spokesperson Luis Sahagun told Insurance Journal in an email. PRAC is currently in the process of filing for a name change for National with DFS, said a spokesperson for Plymouth Rock. The specific terms of the transaction, including the purchase price, are confidential.
As part of a previously announced strategy, Farmers Insurance is sunsetting the 21st Century Companies brand in 48 states, including New York, Sahagun added. The 21st Century Companies continue to actively offer private passenger automobile insurance in California and Hawaii, as well as acting as servicing carriers for Assigned Risk automobile insurance, he said. Farmers Insurance, through its Farmers brand and through its Bristol West and Foremost affiliates, will continue to actively market automobile insurance across New York State, according to Sahagun.
The Plymouth Rock Group is in the process of submitting information to DFS for other applications to expand further into the New York auto and homeowners insurance markets through other affiliates.
“We intend to offer a broadly competitive product for auto insurance customers across the entire state of New York,” the Plymouth Rock spokesperson said. “In addition, we have applied for a license to offer home insurance.”
PRAC intends to sell both direct and through agents, the spokesperson stated, adding that while the company is not using this acquisition of National as part of an immediate expansion plan, it is open to expanding into other states given the right opportunity.
“We just launched in Pennsylvania last year and in New York this year, so I think we’ll have our hands full for the time being,” the spokesperson said. “But you can never say never. If the right opportunity presents itself, we would consider it.”
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