Montana News

Sep 18, 2012 11:08 AM by Mike Powers (Missoula)

Missoula-based Payne Financial Group and Western States Insurance merging

MISSOULA - A pair of Montana-based insurance power-houses are merging to form a new, employee-owned company.

Payne Financial Group and Western States Insurance announced on Monday that they will combine forces to cover 30 communities in Montana, Oregon, Washington and Idaho.

The new company is being called one of the largest private insurance brokerages in the United States, with projected revenues of $90 million and 650 employees, according to a joint news release.

Brian Donahue, CEO of Payne Financial Group, said, "This is a watershed moment for our clients, our employees and the insurance industry as a whole. This agreement instantly deepens the resources and services available to our clients while strengthening our position in the insurance marketplace."

Kyle Lingscheit, CEO of Western States Insurance, noted, "Both of our companies have long been committed to knowing the insurance business, being true assets to clients, building relationships and making a real difference for the companies and individuals we serve."

A name for the new company will be announced in due course, according to a press release.

Clients of both companies will retain their existing insurance policies and agents while the two companies undertake the necessary process to combine their operations; that is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

No changes in staffing, management or office locations were included in the announcement.

As part of the agreement, the new company will adopt the employee-ownership structure that's been implemented by Payne Financial Group since the latter company's inception in 1992.

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