Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company today announced that it will shiftly entirely to an independent agency product distribution system by July 1, 2020.
The Columbus, Ohio-based company already has relationships with about 10,000 independent agents in the United States.
About 2,000 agents still have exclusive agent relationships with Nationwide.
Nationwide’s remaining exclusive agents “will have the opportunity to transition to an independent agency model between now and July 1, 2020,” the company said in an announcement about the shift.
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Nationwide included a statement from Mark Berven, president of Nationwide Property & Casualty. “We don’t anticipate any changes for members,” Berven said in the statement. “Agents will continue to serve members as they have in the past and still have access to Nationwide’s broad range of insurance and financial services products.”
Nationwide said in the announcement that the shift should have many benefits for the exclusve agents that convert to independent status.
The agents will still have access to all of Nationwide’s products, but they will have an easier time passing their agencies on to others, they will have an easier time diversifying their revenue streams, and they will have an easier time buying independent agencies, Nationwide said.
Nationwide is well-known as an issuer of property-casualty insurance. It also ranked as the 14th biggest issuer of life insurance in 2017, with $3.4 billion in direct premiums that year, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
Nationwide ranked sixth in terms of annuity sales, with about $10 billion in 2017 annuity sales, according to LIMRA.