Wary of buying an additional agency but eager to glean more revenue from commercial clients, a Memphis bank has teamed up with Financial Keyosk Inc. to sell insurance to its small-business accounts.
Union Planters Bank already had an internal agency selling personal lines but wanted to get into commercial lines and decided the best way to that was through the Financial Keyosk model, says Joanne Collins, president of Union Planters Insurance Agency.
The alliance with Financial Keyosk, in Carpentersville, Ill., began with a modest pilot effort that has proved promising, says Collins, a former insurance company executive whom the bank recruited last year to head up its insurance unit.
Rather than acquire an agency with commercial insurance expertise, says Collins, she decided it was far more cost-effective to team up her agency with Financial Keyosk.
Since April, Financial Keyosk has provided Union Planters with two experienced agents, one in Memphis and the other in Atlanta, to help it expand insurance sales from a modest line of personal products sold through its in-house agency to a wide array of commercial lines.
Financial Keyosks agents sell over the phone or right out of the banks local branches, says Collins.
The company uses Internet technology to provide banks as well as independent insurance agents, affinity groups and others with a virtual agency platform.
Its agents are hired locally and can reside anywhere in the country, which means advisors in a bank like Union Planters can get local support from licensed agents trained in local business practices, standards and regulations, notes John Dawson.
Products offered by Financial Keyosk include commercial property-casualty insurance, workers compensation, and group benefits such as life, health, and 401(k) programs, along with a variety of personal lines.
Dawson, CEO of Financial Keyosk, says his company provides an automated system for prospecting, selling, completing applications, receiving quotes and managing agency administration he refers to as Virtual FK.