Arrow Benefits Group has expanded its footprint, recently announcing the completion of a merger, four acquisitions and a new national partnership.
All told, Petaluma-based Arrow is forecasting $9.5 million in revenues for 2019, said Stephen McNeil, managing partner.
“Arrow has tripled in size in just four years, and the creation of our new national partnership promises continued expansion of our size, strength and capabilities,” he said. “It also allows us to deepen our already-substantial commitment to our North Bay communities.”
On a regional level, Arrow has merged with San Francisco-based Scarborough Insurance Agency, an employee benefits brokerage founded in 1987, McNeil said. The deal, finalized in July, included Scarborough principals Fred Naranjo, Kathleen Lemke and Barb Hendricks joining Arrow, along with two of Scarborough’s employees, McNeil said, adding that the two agencies already had an established relationship under Arrow’s umbrella broker program, which it started in 2014.
An umbrella organization is defined as an association of businesses in the same industry that work together to coordinate activities or pool resources.
Arrow closed out 2018 by completing its acquisition of four independent agencies from the Bay Area: Advanced Benefits of Santa Rosa, Mission Benefits of Sunnyvale, Copeland Insurance of San Rafael, and Ahern Insurance of Novato. The transactions also help to expand Alianza, Arrow’s Spanish Language Division, he said.
The acquisitions deal coincided with Arrow co-founding with 17 other agencies a new national retail insurance agency called Patriot Growth Insurance Services, Inc., which launched Jan. 1, McNeil said. As a co-founder, Arrow became an incorporated business, but will retain the Arrow Benefits Group brand, he said.
Fort Washington, Pennsylvania-based Patriot’s business model delivers resources and strategic support to its agencies, whose leaders continue to operate autonomously in their local markets.
Patriot plans to expand its presence in benefits, property and casualty, administration and wealth management, and has already added firms to the fold since its January launch, McNeil said.
As part of its creation, Patriot expanded its market reach by purchasing TRUE Network Advisors, an alliance of professional benefit firms with offices in over 25 cities. Arrow Benefits Group is now the North Bay office of TRUE Network Advisors.
Arrow believes the purchase of TRUE “provides a passionate dedication to employee benefits, with a greater ability to provide a series of innovative services and vendor partnerships that will help our clients offer benefits on a more comprehensive scale with greater efficiency and degree of dedication,” said Jordan Shields, senior partner at Arrow, in a statement. All of the new deals expand upon Arrow’s existing products, tools and services, which include human resources through a strategic partnership with The Personnel Perspective and Managing Partner Karen Alary; Plan Administration (purchase of Shirrell Consulting Services and subsequent expansion), and Alternative Funding (creation of Self-Insurance Expert).
“I’d also say we are an incubator of new ideas … taking ideas that our employees have internally and running with them to see what sticks,” McNeil said. “It’s been a breath of fresh air and that’s helped us grow, and we will continue to grow in the coming years.”