NU Online News Service, June 21, 1:15 p.m. – Anthem Insurance Companies Inc., Indianapolis, says it has filed a plan for converting the company to a stock charter, from a mutual charter, with the Indiana Department of Insurance.

A mutual insurer is owned by its policyholders. A stock company is owned by its stockholders.

Anthem says it wants to convert, or demutualize, so it will have an easier time raising capital from investors.

The demutualization is subject to approval by Anthem’s policyholder-owners as well as state insurance regulators.

Anthem says it will compensate its policyholder-owners for their current ownership interest by giving them the full value of the company.

Anthem is one of the biggest health insurers in the United States. It generated $226 million in net income in 2000 on $8.8 billion in revenue. Most of the revenue came from providing major medical coverage for a total of 7.5 million customers in Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Colorado, Nevada and Maine.

Because most customers receive coverage through group policies owned by their employers, only 1 million of the policyholders are actually eligible to vote on the conversion, Anthem estimates.

Anthem hopes to mail a proxy and information about the conversion to members in August and complete the conversion by Dec. 31.

More information is available from Anthem’s Web site, at http://www.anthem.com