Jumping Paths: Charting a Course for Growth

Jumping Paths: Charting a Course for Growth

When the opportunity arose to build a strategic partnership model unlike any other in a very crowded space, the answer was a resounding yes. There are more than two dozen acquirers of independent insurance agencies throughout the US, that maximize profits by centralizing, standardizing and terminating. I jumped from a role that I loved, as Director of Acquisitions of BroadStreet Partners, to join Bain Capital and Keystone Insurers Group to launch Keystone Agency Partners to lead something truly different centered on growth.

Why insurance agency acquisitions?

The fundamentals of an insurance agency make it a uniquely attractive investment. Predictable and recurring cash flows, a compulsory product and service, very little capital expenditures, and a highly fragmented industry of aging owners make the industry ideal for acquirors.

Prior to the founding of Keystone Agency Partners, what was missing from our industry was a solution that can both satisfy an agency’s requisite succession and perpetuation needs, while also preserving what makes them unique for future generations. That’s why I made the leap – to grow, not destroy!

Independent agencies are more valuable to their communities than the policies they sell.

Local insurance agencies not only provide great job opportunities and fuel their local economy, but they build and foster community to ensure their future. By serving as empathetic advisors to their neighbors and fellow business owners, independent agents instill the confidence and provide their communities with the protection they need to build and protect for the future. They are pillars in their community—sponsoring local charities and non-profits and serving as leaders on economic development councils and community organizations, such as rotary clubs. It is in everyone’s best interest to ensure the perpetuation of the independent insurance agency.

Enter Keystone Agency Partners.

The cornerstone of our offering is to provide a connected but autonomous operating model combined with best-in-class resources and support. Through our partnership with Bain Capital and Keystone Insurers Group, we paired a global investment leader and one of the largest agency networks in the nation with a truly unique offering.

We approach our prospects as partners—not targets or sellers. We give agency owners the opportunity to maintain meaningful equity in their own company and support how they want to grow their legacy, rather than auctioning it off to the highest bidder. Our ideal partner isn’t traditionally for sale and takes on one of two primary flavors.

  1. The entrepreneur who is not looking to exit. We seek agency owners that will value a strategic partner that helps accelerate their existing successes through access to resources and expertise that drive growth.
  2. The entrepreneur who has identified the next wave of leadership and wants to empower them, but for a myriad of reasons, which I will explore in later posts, seeks a partner who can monetize their ownership position while leaving equity in the agency for the next generation.

Our model isn’t for everyone. For those looking to sell and exit stage left, there are plenty of other buyers.

For agency owners looking for a strategic partner to help chart a different course, look no further. 

I look forward to expanding on our acquisition approach more in the months ahead. I love that through our partnership approach I am able to work with dynamic agency owners to craft a partnership and structure tailored to their goals, rather than a cookie-cutter approach to acquisitions. If our approach speaks to you and you’re looking for a long- term strategic partner to bring your agency to new heights—don’t be a stranger—send me a message on LinkedIn.

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