The company has completed its transition which has been ongoing over the last 18 months.
Nationwide has announced that as of July 1, it has become an independent insurance agency carrier.
The Columbus, Ohio-based insurer has kept its relationships with 99 percent of its formerly captive agents.
For 18 months, the insurer has been working on the transition process to become an independent insurance agency carrier. Throughout that time, it has managed to keep over 99 percent of its agents, who were formerly employed by the company. Now, those insurance agents have joined the company’s independent agency channel, maintaining their relationship with the firm.
The original announcement that Nationwide would be taking this significant step occurred in 2018. At that time, it stated that it would be moving to a fully independent model and launched its transition toward its goal at that time. Since that time, new written premium driven by independent agents has increased by 35 percent, according to the insurer.
Nationwide has been in part an independent insurance agency carrier since 1929.
Since 1929, it has worked with independent agents selling its policies. That said, it has now shifted its model exclusively in that direction, now working with over 11,000 independent agents across the United States. Those professionals are selling personal and commercial lines, agribusiness, excess and surplus and financial services solutions, said Nationwide.
“Despite the challenges associated with the COVID-19 crisis, we’ve made tremendous progress in transforming our business to meet the needs of independent agents and set our former exclusive agents up for success within the independent agent model,” said Nationwide Property and Casualty president and COO Mark Berven in a prepared statement.
In the original 2018 announcement, Nationwide said that as an independent insurance agency carrier, agents would maintain access to the complete range of the insurer’s products. At the same time, it said that agents would maintain greater flexibility for using other carriers. This would benefit them by providing improved capacity for drawing and retaining commercial lines business and accessing investment capital in their agencies over time. Agents would also have succession planning control, said the insurer, among other advantages.