Posted on 26 Oct 2011
Last month, one of our long-time storefronts, Mainstay Insurance Group, announced its rebranding and new name, Fulcrum Insurance Programs, and the launch of its new products and services. We caught up with Eric Arthur, EVP of the Bellevue, Washington-based program administrator, to discuss the exciting changes and growth taking place.
“In creating Mainstay, our goal was to serve as a program administrator that delivered quality innovative programs at competitive prices that served the needs of our agency partners and their customers and met the underwriting profitability goals of our carriers,” said Eric. “We worked hard towards this goal, and brought strong products to the market that allowed us to achieve success in the program business space much faster than we had initially contemplated. We looked at our accomplishments and our plans to expand our portfolio of products and decided it was an ideal time to rebrand the company to reflect what we’re all about. We added ‘program’ to address the market we serve, and ‘fulcrum’ to speak to our pivotal role in supporting the needs of both agencies and carriers in a balanced, responsible, and responsive fashion.”
In addition to the company’s new brand, Fulcrum Insurance Programs added two new products: Fulcrum for Hotels/Resorts and Fulcrum for Casinos. These new programs complement what Fulcrum has been successfully providing in the habitational and real estate industries.
“Fulcrum for Hotels/Resorts is a new focus area for us,” explained Eric. “The program includes all lines of coverage and is available on a monoline basis.” General Liability is offered through A-rated carrier LIU, can be written on a first-dollar or low deductible basis, and includes a number of endorsements specific to the hotel industry. “We offer Guest Discrimination, Innkeepers, and Liquor Liability in addition to coverage for defense costs,” said Eric. “We also pair the GL with a high-limit Excess Liability solution that goes up to $200 million. This is an expansion of our Umbrella program, which had a previous limit of up to $100 million. We offer the increased limit as an option for our hotel and real estate customers.”
The Hotels/Resorts program also offers Property coverage through an A-rated carrier with a number of broad extensions, including a Green Replacement Upgrade endorsement. This coverage pays the extra expense incurred when a non-certified building chooses to rebuild in a green, Leed-certified fashion after a loss. This added cost might be driven by use of Energy Star- rated equipment, eco-friendly lighting, paint and carpet, or water-efficient plumbing fixtures.
Another new program is Fulcrum for Casinos, whose primary focus is an Excess/Umbrella product with limits of up to $200 million. The program is available for all types of casinos, including destination and resort casinos, hotels with gaming, stand-alones, and tribal and nontribal. The program is designed to compete effectively for both small and large accounts.
Fulcrum also added a new specialty market to expand its Habitational division to include Affordable Housing, Student Housing, and Senior Housing to its existing targeted classes of Market Rate Apartments, Condominium Associations, and Homeowners Associations. The program is offered through the Association of Green Property Owners and Managers (AGPOM), a comprehensive platform that provides coverages for members who pursue a green-building strategy and also offers an array of resources to promote and reward green-building efforts. “This new carrier was impressed with what we’re doing with AGPOM to promote green solutions and wanted to be a part of the effort. This allowed us to expand into additional markets with an A-rated carrier that’s well ingrained in the habitational space,” said Eric.
Property and Equipment Breakdown, General Liability, Auto Liability and Physical Damage, Umbrella, and Crime coverages are available in the Fulcrum for Habitational program. The Fulcrum for Real Estate program also offers these lines of coverages with a number of key extensions for Property & Equipment Breakdown. Coverages are available on a monoline basis, depending on the needs of the broker.
Further demonstrating their dedication to program value, Fulcrum formed a strategic partnership with Succeed Management Solutions, based in Portland, Oregon, to provide agencies and their clients with a Risk Management Center. This web-based platform offers a number of critical solutions to manage and mitigate risk and losses, including: a comprehensive library of safety techniques, employee training, job descriptions and job hazard analysis, management of OSHA and other regulatory compliance, in addition to a Certificates of Insurance tracking and reporting system. “One of the key exposures for hotel owners and managers,” explained Eric, “involves the many vendors and contractors who come on to the premises for various reasons – from those making deliveries to individuals performing upgrades and renovations to setting up conference meetings, for example. Certificates of Insurance need to be effectively managed and tracked so that the hotel doesn’t find itself liable for a loss due to the performance of a vendor or contractor. The system allows the owner of the business or the broker to enter the information, with notification automatically generated each year to get an updated certificate.”
The Risk Management Center can be co-branded with the agency’s name. What’s more, for those agencies that want to provide the Risk Management Center as an added-value service to their other customers, Fulcrum has arranged with Succeed Management Solutions to offer agents and brokers a discount. All you have to do is contact Fulcrum to receive a discount code to sign up.
Another milestone for Fulcrum is the continued growth and expansion of its AGPOM program. There are more than 2,100 member locations today. Fulcrum is also looking to further broaden the reach of the AGPOM program with Charter retailers on the East Coast. Charter retailers receive a number of benefits in addition to the insurance program, including insurance premium credits based on their level of participation in the Green Movement, access to a green-building plan, leveraging AGPOM’s renewal energy credit (REC) program, the Risk Management Center, and much more.
“It’s been an exciting time for us,” said Eric, “with the launch of our new brand, programs, and services, and the enhancement of our existing programs to offer additional coverages and broader risk appetites to our agency partners. Looking at the heart of what we do, at what truly differentiates us in the distribution chain, is an unwavering responsiveness to our brokers’ needs through a high level of communication while also ensuring that we’re writing profitable business. Sometimes that means we can’t write the business. But we let the broker know immediately, and they appreciate that. They know that when they do business with Fulcrum, they’ll get answers, focus, and innovation.”
To learn more about Fulcrum’s new products and services, including the Risk Management Center offer, please contact Eric Arthur at 425.233.6463, or email him at email@example.com. Also, visit Fulcrum’s new website at: www.fulcrumprograms.com.