Insurance agency owners overwhelmingly view M&A as a success and value independence when seeking a partnership

HARRISBURG, PA–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Eighty percent of independent insurance agency owners and leaders say mergers and acquisitions (M&A) are a success for the agency, according to a recent survey conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of Keystone Agency Partners (KAP), a fast-growing is, Business Insurance Top-100 ranked national insurance brokerage platform.

The 2022 Independent Insurance Agency Owners Survey also found that there is some appetite to sell their own agency to another strategic broker or private equity-backed investor, with more than half (56 percent) of agencies reporting that they are somewhat or very interested in selling today. However, more than half (56 percent) of leaders say one of the biggest benefits of independence is the ability to make their own business decisions.

“These research results reveal a reluctance to sell.” no a result of the industry’s negative perception of M&A. Rather, it likely has to do with the perceived loss of control when an owner sells their agency,” said Dan Girardi, chief acquisitions officer at KAP. “Partnerships with a retained ownership model solve this problem because they allow the owners to retain a stake in the agency and retain their independent entrepreneurial spirit.”

When it comes to competing with national brokers, more than half of independent agencies (52 percent) report that they often or always win the business—citing their close personal relationships with clients (63 percent) as the top driver for winning business, followed by more high level of engagement with their customers (46 percent).

“Independent local agencies have levels of knowledge about the community and the inherent risks facing local businesses that larger insurance brokers cannot replicate,” said Jeff Turner, CEO of KAP. “By enabling agencies to maintain their autonomy while providing them with strategic support and resources to accelerate agency growth, KAP’s connected autonomy model breathes new life into agency owners, reignites their entrepreneurial spirit and powers their success.” ”

Additional findings from the study include:

  • Strategic partnerships are among the top elements (37 percent) that agencies believe will help them grow and compete in today’s marketplace.
  • The the biggest challenges face agencies include attracting or retaining talent (40 percent), price competition (26 percent), the amount of money they can spend on marketing/advertising (23 percent) and cyber security, data privacy and reducing digital risk (21 percent).

  • Agencies are interested in consulting support for marketing and communications (71 percent), strategic planning (64 percent) and organic growth strategy (63 percent). Large agencies ($500k+) are more likely to be interested in support for product innovation (65 percent), sales training (64 percent) and data analysis (61 percent) compared to smaller agencies.

Download the full study at: https://keystoneagencypartners.com/news/2022OwnersStudy.

Research Method: This survey was conducted online in the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of Keystone Agency Partners between April 11 and May 9, 2022, among 385 owners, co-owners, CEOs and COOs of independent insurance agencies with annual revenue of $150,000 or more – a sample representing the composition of the market. Sampling precision of online Harris polls is measured using a Bayesian confidence interval. For this study, the sample data are accurate to the limits + 5.1 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level.

About Keystone Agency Partners

Keystone Agency Partners is a fast-growing insurance brokerage platform that acquires and partners with independent insurance agencies across the United States. KAP provides best-in-class services and capital investments that unlock potential and deliver massive and profitable growth within its platform agencies. Keystone Agency Partners was founded in 2020 in partnership with Keystone Insurers Group, Inc. and affiliates of Bain Capital, LP. For more information, please visit: www.keystoneagencypartners.com.

About the Harris Poll

Harris Poll is a global consulting and market research firm that seeks to uncover the authentic values ​​of today’s society to inspire leaders to create a better tomorrow. He works with clients in three main areas: building a twenty-first century corporate reputation, developing a brand strategy, and tracking performance and earning organic media through public relations research. One of the longest running polls in the US, The Harris Poll has been tracking public opinion, motivations and social sentiment since 1963 and is now part of Stagwell, the challenger holding company created to transform marketing.

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