Corporate Brown & Brown Overview
Headquartered in Daytona Beach and Tampa, with origins dating back to 1939, Brown & Brown, Inc. was incorporated under the laws of the state of Florida in 1959. The Company is a publicly owned corporation with its stock traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol BRO (NYSE:BRO).
Brown & Brown has grown and expanded to the point that it is currently ranked as the sixth largest independent insurance intermediary organization in both the U.S. and the world (based on the July 2007 ranking by Business Insurance magazine). The company operates over 170 profit centers in 38 states. While of a size that provides customers access to virtually every highly rated insurance underwriting company in the country, as well many within the European insurance marketplace, Brown & Brown’s real strength is in the great flexibility it provides managers and agents at the local level. Each office is operated as an entrepreneurial entity, making it possible to respond rapidly to the needs of local customers, with local knowledge.
Brown & Brown is one of the selected companies that comprise the Standard & Poor's Mid-Cap 400 Index. In September 2007 FORBES.COM ranked Brown & Brown #16 on its 2007 list of "The 100 Best Mid-Cap Stocks in America." FORBES magazine ranked Brown & Brown at #48 on its 2005 list of "America's Best Small Companies." FORTUNE magazine ranked Brown & Brown at #69 on its 2004 list of "America's 100 Fastest-Growing Companies."
Starting in 2004, and continuing every year since, Brown & Brown has been designated as a Mergent's Dividend Index Achiever. This distinct honor is based on a record of 10 or more consecutive years of dividend increases, which has been achieved by less than 3% of U.S. listed dividend-paying companies.
The Company markets and sells primarily property/casualty insurance and employee benefit products and services. Since the Company does not engage in underwriting activities, it does not assume underwriting risks. Instead, it acts in an agency capacity to provide customers with targeted, customized risk management products.
Brown & Brown and its subsidiaries offer a broad range of insurance and reinsurance products and services, as well as risk management, third party administration, managed health care and Medicare set-aside services and programs. Providing service to business, public entity, individual, trade and professional association clients nationwide, the Company is highly regarded for its over 68 years of proven experience in providing the programs necessary to properly protect every type of business enterprise.
An important by-product of Brown & Brown’s decentralized structure is that it serves to improve the quality of customer service. Because customer service and claims activities are handled by employees in local offices rather than by a centralized customer service team, often located hundreds of miles from the clients, Brown & Brown employees have a vested interest in customer retention. This fact is proven out in its customer retention rate, which consistently runs in the mid 90% range.
Another facet of Brown & Brown’s strength is its acquisition strategy, which plays an integral part in the company’s success. Many of its acquisitions originate from the relationships formed during its 68-plus years of growth in the insurance industry. The company targets only profitable, well-run agencies, and perhaps more importantly, ones that have high-quality people with proven track records of success in serving customers. Each new addition to the team also brings increased marketing opportunities, as well as improved influence with insurance carriers who want to market services and products nationally.
Just as Brown & Brown’s unique culture and business strategy benefits its many varied customer groups, so does it play a vital role in attracting and retaining some of the best insurance people in the country. As the insurance industry, which is true with most business today, is constantly changing, one fact remains constant – insurance is a people-driven business built on relationships. Recognizing the importance of people as its principal asset means the company devotes considerable time and effort recruiting, cultivating and evaluating employees to ensure that a well developed organization is maintained – one that does not rely just on a small group of policy makers. Again, Brown & Brown’s decentralized structure is key, allowing decisions to be made at the local level, eliminating rigid rules and bureaucratic interference that can slow progress and stifle new ideas. The Company considers its employees to be far more than ordinary and knows that they achieve extraordinary results because they are challenged, empowered and rewarded for doing so.
Brown & Brown’s culture and results benefit not only its customers and employees, but also its shareholders. As a publicly owned company the Company’s business strategy and strong financial controls have helped it achieve fourteen consecutive years of double digit bottom-line growth. It is one of the reasons the company has been referred to as “the crown jewel” of the insurance brokerage industry.
Brown & Brown is truly An American Meritocracy® that is “Built to Last.”