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Integrity Marketing Acquires Assurance: Deals

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Integrity Marketing has acquired The Assurance Group.

Integrity Marketing is a Dallas-based insurance distributor that has been using private equity firm to buy up other insurance distributors. It has about 1,500 employees and relationships with 275,000 agents.

The Assurance group is an Archdale, North Carolina-based insurance marketing organization (IMO). Integrity Marketing is also getting Leads2Success, a lead generation company affiliate.

(Related: AmeriLife Acquires a Majority Stake in TAG: Annuity Deals)

Ed Shackelford started the company now known as The Assurance Group in 1988, and his wife, Beverly Shackelford, started Leads2Success in 2004.

The company now has 120 employees, a career agency network with about 600 career agents, 5,000 brokerage agents, 30 regional sales office locations, and relationships with about 70,000 clients. The career agents tend to focus on products of interest to older consumers, including Medicare plans, life insurance and annuities.

The Assurance Group expects to product about $250 million in premiums in 2020, or about $3,500 per client.

The Shackelfords’ daughters, Brooke Mitchell and Brittany Bowles, now run the lead generation business, and it mails about 50 million pieces per year, according to Integrity Marketing.

Integrity Marketing is not saying how much it’s paying for The Assurance Group, but it says that Ed and Beverly Shackelford will become Integrity Marketing managing partners.

In other deal news:

AmeriLife Group, Clearwater, Florida has acquired Secure Administrative Solutions (SAS) from A-CAP.

AmeriLife is a life, health and annuity distributor that’s using private equity money to grow rapidly through acquisitions. It has 50 insurance agency locations and relationships with about 25 marketing organizations and 150,000 insurance agents and advisors.

A-CAP is the holding company that serves as the parent for Atlantic Coast Life Insurance Company and Sentinel Security Life Insurance Company.

SAS is a Salt Lake City-based plan administrator.

AmeriLife was already the owner of American Insurance Administrators (AIA), a Medicare supplement insurance program administrator, and American Benefits Administrators, voluntary benefits product administrator.

SAS has been providing administrative support for Medicare supplement insurance, fixed annuity and life insurance programs.

The SAS deal will help AmeriLife provide administrative services for all types of products, for all sizes of carriers, and with the latest technology, AmeriLife says.

AmeriLife says that AIA and SAS will keep their own branding, but that Janelle Boudrero, the president of SAS, will run both AIA and SAS.

Boudrero has extensive experience with setting up new operating processes and launching annuity products, AmeriLife says.

AmeriLife has also acquired Senior Healthcare Direct, a Palm Harbor, Florida-based company that presents itself to the public as Medicare Bob.

Medicare Bob is an independent broker that sells Medicare supplement insurance and Medicare Advantage plans.

Scott Perry, AmeriLife’s chief executive officer, said in a comment included in the Medicare Bob deal announcement that the deal will help AmeriLife expand its call center capabilities rapidly, to respond to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on consumers’ interest in buying coverage over the telephone, rather than through face-to-face transactions.

Robert Bache founded Medicare Bob in 2012, as a Medicare Insurance Marketplace.

Medicare Bob has relationships with about 30 insurers and thousands of clients, according to AmeriLife.

Bache will continue to be the president of Senior Healthcare Direct, and he will also become a member of the AmeriLife leadership team, AmeriLife says.

Foresters Financial, Toronto, a fraternal insurer, and Canada Protection Plan, a Toronto-based distributor of no medical and simplified issue life insurance, have agreed to combine their operations.

The companies say they intend to keep both companies’ employees.

The combined company would operate as Canada Protection Plan, A Foresters Financial Company, in Canada, and as Foresters Financial elsewhere in the world.

The deal is subject to approval by Canadian regulators.

— Read MetLife May End Up Looking More Like Aflac and Unumon ThinkAdvisor.

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