Posted on 13 Aug 13 by Annie George
Our feature article this week is with Storefront, USG Insurance Services, Inc., a national wholesale brokerage and MGA that provides innovative solutions for harder-to-place commercial insurance accounts. Founded in 2001, privately owned USG today has 15 offices across the country and four subsidiary companies, with over 140 team members. USG represents 260 brokerage markets and is an MGA for 16 carriers.
We spoke with Kristen Skender, Director of National Sales & Marketing for USG Insurance/USG Holding Group, about the company and the continued growth it has experienced since opening its doors more than 12 years ago. Kristen has been with USG for seven years and oversees the marketing and sales teams. Based in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania she manages the brands of USG Insurance Services, Inc., (BFS) Brokers Financial Services, (AAU) Allied American Underwriters, Innovations (marketing, advertising, and technology solutions), and USG Holding Group.
“We ended 2012 with $111 million in gross written premium,” said Kristen, “and expect to exceed this in 2013 with projections well north of $130 million. There are several reasons for our growth and success, which also contributes to what sets us apart as a wholesaler. While we write business on an admitted and non-admitted basis, our forte is in providing agents with solutions for challenging, harder-to-place accounts. When agents have accounts that no one else is interested in, that is when they turn to us. We have the expertise and the markets to provide a sound, comprehensive insurance solution.”
In addition, USG has its own proprietary, state-of-the-art agency management system (BMx), which expedites the submission process – from quoting to policy servicing. “This is one of our core competencies and a notable differentiating factor in the marketplace,” explained Kristen. “We are the only one with this technology today; we are currently commercializing this solution to be licensed to others in the wholesale/MGA, retail, and carrier sectors.”
What’s more, with USG, an agent does business with one preferred contact in lieu of several, streamlining the entire process. “With us, an agent doesn’t have to deal with a number of different contacts depending on the type of risk, coverage line, geographical location, etc.,” said Kristen. “You work with your preferred USG contact person who will help you with all your accounts and needs. If additional expertise is required, then your preferred contact will work with our internal team of specialists to address specific questions or issues. The agent has one point of contact, making it easier to do business.”
USG has also made a significant investment over the years in its talent, which has contributed substantially to its organic growth. “We have brought on talented producers whom we’ve built our office locations around. Finding the right talent has greatly attributed to our success as they bring with them extensive coverage specialization and strong market relationships,” said Kristen.
Agents have access to the “MyUSG” portal, where they can receive quotes online through two different carriers, USLI and RAMP Century Surety/United Specialty; with more coming online soon. They can also download over 2,000 applications from USG’s library. Additionally, they have the ability to customize marketing sheets with their agency names/brand. Moreover, through USG’s marketing subsidiary, Innovations, agents can design customized campaigns produced in partnership with USG’s carriers.
USG writes business on an open-access basis in all states except Hawaii, and offers a full line of products, including in the more challenging classes of business: Habitational, Hospitality (restaurants, bars/taverns), Manufacturing/Distributors, Medical/Healthcare (correctional services), and Contractors. USG also specializes in Workers Compensation and Transportation, and most recently launched a specialty division with new products for Garage including Dealers and Non-Dealers.
“We have an exciting, collaborative culture that is ideas-oriented and open to creating custom programs, helping our agency partners expand their footprint in challenging classes while making the process of doing business easier,” explained Kristen.
For more information about USG, please visit www.usgins.com. Or you can call Kristen at 724-754-9007.