NU Online News Service, April 1, 2003, 11:53 a.m. EST – Universal American Financial Corp., Rye Brook, N.Y., has completed previously announced plans to acquire Pyramid Life Insurance Company from Ceres Group Inc., Cleveland, for $57.5 million.

Pyramid was founded in 1913 and now sells health and life insurance products aimed at older consumers. The company distributes its products in 26 states through 1,100 career agents in 29 regional sales offices.

Universal American, which also sells insurance products aimed at older consumers, says it has already started combining the operations of Pyramid with its own.

Most of the Pyramid business should be using Universal American systems by Dec. 31, Universal American says.

Ceres says it will be using the deal proceeds to expand its senior brokerage operation and add to the statutory capital base at its Continental General Insurance Company subsidiary.

Ceres will be keeping Pyramid Life’s administration systems and most of Pyramid Life’s employees. Ceres will use the former Pyramid Life employees and systems to strengthen other Ceres operations, the company says.