When Arrowhead lifted out the small commercial program from QBE and created Arrowhead Core Commercial, in less than a year they went from a product offering in 28 states to 50 states, thanks to a distribution network already in place.
“I like to call it distribution prowess,” explained Rich Dern, Arrowhead’s director of business development. “We imported many of QBE’s independent agents selling that program and then used our existing distribution network to grow the program into all 50 states.”
Many of the agencies new to writing Core Commercial weren’t new to Arrowhead or National Programs. They were already contracted to write other programs from Arrowhead, Irving Weber and others.
“Our network of producers continues to grow year over year, as we bring on more than 100 new agencies annually,” Dern explained. “We have the capabilities and the proof that we can take a complicated commercial group of products and expand it quickly and efficiently, leveraging our distribution network.
“We had thousands of producers already contracted to write our Automotive Aftermarket, Workers’ Compensation, Forestry programs and more. Many were immediately ready to get contracted to write our Core Commercial program,” added Tom Kussurelis, National Programs’ EVP and COO. “From there, we introduced them to still more commercial programs that they could write.”
In their speed-to-market approach, Arrowhead and National Programs share teams dedicated to setting up new agency appointments including licensing. Another team onboards new producers efficiently, so that they can begin writing business right away.
“Arrowhead has field marketing teams that look for specific producers who will map well to our products,” Dern explained. “We don’t appoint every Tom, Dick and Harry. In many cases our programs prefer limited distribution. It all comes down to finding the right agencies and producers. Not everyone will fit. When they do, we help them scale quickly to write more business.”
“Our network of 25,000 distribution partners includes not only independent retail agencies, but also carrier-owned agencies and agency networks of all types,” Kussurelis said. “It also includes state and industry associations; franchise, affinity and purchasing groups; banks and financial institutions; major national wholesalers; and – the wave of the future – online aggregators and comparative raters.
“We’ve come a long way in our API connectivity, allowing us to offer our programs online to producers. We believe that the time will come – and quickly – that if our products aren’t digitally enabled, we won’t have a product. We’re busy building towards the future where our products need to be available in multiple channels.”