The proposed merger between Madison-based American Family Insurance Mutual Holding Company (“American Family”) and Florida-based Main Street America Group Mutual Holdings, Inc. (“Main Street”) has surpassed its final hurdle. With more than 90 percent of votes cast in favor of the merger, during the insurer’s October 19th member meeting, members of American Family have officially approved the merger effective as of October 31, 2018. The merger had been previously approved by both the boards of directors of the two insurers as well as the state insurance regulators in Wisconsin, Florida, Indiana, Minnesota and South Carolina.
“Today’s approval affirms our policyholder members’ trust in us as their insurance partner – and for that American Family is extremely grateful,” said Jack Salzwedel, American Family chair and CEO. “As a company, we are deeply focused on building trust in everything that we do, from exceptional service, to customer-focused products, to support of communities where we do business. The merger with Main Street helps us improve in each of these areas.”
As part of the terms of the transaction, Tom Van Berkel and Idalene F. Kesner, a Main Street America board member since 2010, and dean and professor of strategic management at Indiana University Kelley School of Business, will join the board of directors of American Family Insurance Mutual Holding Company.
Based in Florida for 95 years, Main Street America has more than $1.2 billion in premium that is written exclusively through its 3,000 independent insurance agents across the country. According to the terms of the transaction, Main Street will continue to operate as a “stand-alone” brand within the American Family Insurance Group, along the same lines as both The General and Boston-based Homesite, who were acquired in 2012 and 2013, respectively. B
“Our policyholder members’ positive vote in support of our merger with American Family ensures we will continue to offer high-quality products and services through independent insurance agents for generations to come,” said Tom Van Berkel, Main Street America’s president and CEO. “Our commitment to our members remains stronger than ever, and we will utilize our combined capabilities to strengthen the service we deliver.”
While American Family sells its branded products primarily through its exclusive agents, those branded products will now be available to Main Street’s independent agency partners thereby strengthening the markets of those agents while providing an additional sales channel for American Family.
The combined equity of Main Street and American Family will be more than $9 billion
With more than $1.2 billion in premium written exclusively by 3,000 independent insurance agents, 95-year-old Main Street America underwrites over 600,000 property/casualty policies in 37 states, as well as 50,000 bonds in 47 states and the District of Columbia. America Family, in turn, is the 13th largest property/casualty insurance group in the United States selling a vast array of insurance products through its exclusive agents in 19 states. As a result of the merger of these two entities, the combined equity of these two groups is estimated to surpass $9 billion.
For those interested in learning more about how Main Street America Group operates in Massachusetts, please refer to Agency Checklists’ May 2017 article, “Main Street America In Massachusetts – What This Mutual Insurer Offers The Independent Agent.”