Peel & Holland announces merger with Riddle Insurance and its subsidiary R. Barga and Company
Happy 2020! As we welcome a new decade of hope and opportunity, we have some great news to share. We are excited to announce that effective January 1, 2020, Riddle Insurance and its subsidiary R. Barga & Company joined the Peel & Holland family of companies.
This merger combines teams totaling 83 employees in seven regional office locations across Western Kentucky. Together, we will continue to serve clients of all sizes in a wide variety of industries. However, our merger allows us to capitalize on our collective areas of expertise across a larger team of industry veterans. For example, Peel & Holland has a team dedicated to insuring public entities such as county or city governments, utilities, libraries and schools in nearly every county across the Commonwealth of Kentucky. We also have vast knowledge to mitigate risks for the construction industry, particularly managing worker’s comp costs. R. Barga and Company is well-known for its excellent service to marinas and the boating industry. Riddle Insurance has deep roots in the coal mining industry that has diversified into strengths serving agriculture and contractors.
What does this news mean for our clients?
Our plan is to slowly unify our operations, making changes designed to positively impact our clients and ensuring no disruption to the quality of service you expect. We are very happy to join together and are looking forward to the many benefits of operating under a single umbrella.
- Your team remains the same. You’ll continue to work with the same contacts as always (same phone, same email, same location). While we may eventually combine office locations, until you hear differently from us, you will still find us at the same location.
- You will benefit from expanded services. By uniting our teams and resources, we will offer our clients access to a broader range of insurance options, improved systems, a larger support team, additional locations, and the combined expertise from a family of companies that have faithfully served this area for 198 years combined.
- Our priorities are unchanged. We are extremely grateful and humbled to play a small part of keeping our clients feeling safe and secure, whether for family or business. The continued trust and loyalty of our clients remain our utmost priorities, and we will share any upcoming changes with full transparency.
From an operational standpoint, Riddle Insurance, R. Barga and Company, and Peel & Holland each will continue to function as independent insurance agencies with access to multiple carriers. This enables us to offer clients a broad choice of products and deliver highly personalized advisory services. Together, we represent thousands of insurance products and are not affiliated with just a single insurance carrier which limits a client’s choices. Combined staffs, additional resources, and multiple office locations will not only expand the companies’ overall geographical footprint, but also will enhance the level of service available to clients. Local ownership will remain in place, and all employees are being retained in their current roles.
More About Our Merger
Mergers such as this are a common growth strategy for small to mid-size insurance agencies. The 2019 Best Practices Study conducted by Reagan Consulting and the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (Big I) reports the insurance industry is currently in the most competitive mergers and acquisitions (M&A) environment in the industry’s history. Agency valuations are at an all-time high. Last year, some 600 insurance agencies and brokers nationwide were acquired, according to consulting firm Ernst & Young, which expects the trend to accelerate. The Peel & Holland transaction differs from typical acquisitions because it does not involve industry giants who often take over local agencies, implementing major changes.
According to findings from the Big I’s most recent Agency Universe Study, the state of the independent agency system remains strong and healthy. The number of agencies in the U.S. stands close to 36,500. The Peel & Holland merger places its combined agency among the top two percent in the nation. Nevertheless, the owners all emphasize their intent on maintaining highly personalized service at the local level as a top priority.
Keith Riley, senior vice president of property and casualty for Peel & Holland says, “There is no better way of providing insurance than through independent agents. Riddle Insurance is a company we have known for some time, and like us, they have a very high regard for the personal relationships they develop. We help clients, large and small, manage their risks and obtain the right insurance at the right price. Skip and his team have built an excellent reputation by offering a wide range of solutions to businesses in their region of the Commonwealth. They have also served the needs of many in Marshall County for over twenty years through R. Barga and Company.” Riley also explained, “This merger integrates two great organizations together, while leaving local relationships intact. Together we will be stronger.”
We welcome your questions.
Naturally, you may have questions, and we welcome those conversations. We are excited about the journey we are on and the opportunities to come. It is our sincere hope that you’ll celebrate with us on this milestone as we strive to grow STRONGER TOGETHER.