SCHAUMBURG, Ill.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Zurich American Insurance Company (ZAIC), a subsidiary of Zurich Insurance Group (Zurich), announced today that it has acquired 100 percent of Rural Community Insurance Agency, Inc. (RCIA) and its subsidiary Rural Community Insurance Company (RCIC). The two are collectively known as Rural Community Insurance Services (RCIS), one of the nation’s leading crop insurance providers, recording approximately $1.9 billion in gross written premiums in 2015. The acquisition expands and diversifies Zurich’s portfolio of commercial insurance products and services in North America. Zurich entered into an agreement with RCIS owner Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE:WFC) in December 2015 to acquire the company. The acquisition became effective on March 31, 2016 at 11:59 p.m.
Zurich has been in the U.S. crop insurance business – a $10 billion plus market – for more than 20 years. The acquisition shifts its long-standing position from a reinsurer into a 100 percent owner of an Approved Insurance Provider (AIP) through the Federal Crop Insurance Program.
“As we have worked over the last few months to complete this acquisition, farmers in much of the United States have been preparing for the spring planting season,” said Mike Foley, CEO North America Commercial and regional chairman of North America. “During this time, we’ve had an opportunity to meet the people that make up RCIS and are proud to welcome them to the Zurich team. They bring a national distribution footprint with highly specialized agents and a strong service reputation, insuring one in six farmers in the U.S. We greatly respect their expertise and look forward to having them as colleagues.”
RCIS will now operate as a stand-alone unit within Zurich North America Commercial’s Programs & Direct Markets (P&DM) business unit. RCIS will continue to focus on meeting customer needs and providing the best possible service.
As an important part of Zurich’s operations in North America, RCIS will continue to offer federal crop insurance programs and private crop insurance products. Since 1982, RCIS helped reshape the crop insurance business by offering a comprehensive line of insurance products and services to meet the unique needs of producers. Going forward RCIS will continue to utilize its national network of more than 3,800 agents, conducting business in all 50 U.S. states providing risk management for more than 130 varieties of crops on more than 90 million acres. It continues to hold memberships with National Crop Insurance Services and the Crop Insurance and Reinsurance Bureau, Inc.
RCIS and Zurich have been working closely together to create a smooth transition for RCIS employees as they become members of the Zurich team in North America.
“On behalf of Wells Fargo, we want to recognize the excellent work that went into ensuring the completion of this important transaction,” said Laura Schupbach, head of Wells Fargo Insurance. “We thank Zurich for their partnership and look forward to continuing to work together as they remain an important carrier for our brokerage business.”
Zurich paid Wells Fargo approximately $700 million for RCIS.
The acquisition adds an exciting new chapter to Zurich’s long history in the U.S. and illustrates how financial discipline has allowed the company to capitalize on market opportunities that meet its strategic objectives, including expansion of commercial lines capabilities.
Zurich continues to prioritize investments in distinctive positions, investing in the businesses and customer segments where it sees the best opportunities for growth.
To learn more about RCIS visit https://www.rcis.com, and Zurich’s commitment to agriculture by visiting at https://www.zurichna.com/en/industries/agriculture.
Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.8 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through 8,700 locations, 12,800 ATMs, the internet (wellsfargo.com) and mobile banking, and has offices in 36 countries to support customers who conduct business in the global economy. With approximately 265,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 30 on Fortune’s 2015 rankings of America’s largest corporations. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially.
Zurich Insurance Group (Zurich) is a leading multi-line insurer that serves its customers in global and local markets. With more than 55,000 employees, it provides a wide range of general insurance and life insurance products and services. Zurich’s customers include individuals, small businesses, and mid-sized and large companies, including multinational corporations, in more than 170 countries. The Group is headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, where it was founded in 1872. The holding company, Zurich Insurance Group Ltd (ZURN), is listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange and has a level I American Depositary Receipt (ZURVY) program, which is traded over-the-counter on OTCQX. Further information about Zurich is available at www.zurich.com.
In North America, Zurich is a leading commercial property-casualty insurance provider serving the global corporate, large corporate, middle market, specialties and programs sectors through the individual member companies of Zurich in North America, including Zurich American Insurance Company. Life insurance and disability coverage issued in the United States in all states except New York is issued by Zurich American Life Insurance Company, an Illinois domestic life insurance company. In New York, life insurance and disability coverage is issued by Zurich American Life Insurance Company of New York, a New York domestic life insurance company. For more information about the products and services it offers and people Zurich employs around the world go to www.zurichna.com. 2012 marked Zurich's 100-year anniversary of insuring America and the success of its customers, shareholders and employees.