Ascension to Acquire Calif.-based Pan American Underwriters

Ascension Insurance Inc. signed an agreement to acquire the assets of the California -based insurance agency, Pan American Underwriters Inc.

Pan American is a wholly owned subsidiary of PAULA Financial (Pink Sheets:PFCO). The board of directors of PFCO voted on Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2008, to recommend the transaction for shareholder approval. Pending a favorable vote by PFCO shareholders, the asset sale is expected to close in February.

Pan American offers property/casualty and benefits products and has been serving the risk management needs of agribusiness employers in the West since 1946.

Headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., Ascension is a full-service insurance and employee benefits agency providing high-level brokerage and risk management services specifically to middle-market companies nationwide.

“We are delighted to have Pan American Underwriters join our firm,” said Ascension’s President and CEO Leonard P. Kline Jr. “This seasoned group of professionals offers an impeccable reputation in the specialized agricultural insurance market.”

Jeffrey A. Snider, chairman and CEO of PFCO added: “Partnering with Ascension will allow Pan American to further grow and expand operations while continuing to respect its service culture. … All Pan American employees will join Ascension at the close of the transaction.”

Together with its private equity partners, Parthenon Capital and Century Capital Management, Ascension Insurance Inc., expects to grow to $200 million in revenue over the next five years.

Source: Ascension Insurance Inc.