Boston - Homesite Insurance announced today that it has entered into a long-term partnership with GMAC Insurance, the insurance arm of General Motors Acceptance Corporation. The partnership calls for Homesite to be the exclusive underwriter of homeowners insurance for GMAC's direct auto and home insurance customer base including, General Motors employees and retirees in the U.S., the members of GMAC Insurance's affinity and worksite relationships, and all other GMAC Insurance direct marketing initiatives. Today these groups represent approximately 8 million individuals. Plans include eventually offering the program through the GMAC Insurance network of approximately 15,000 Independent Agents.
"We chose Homesite for three key reasons: their advanced, web-oriented technology platform that allows for seamless connectivity to GMAC; their exclusive focus on the homeowners market; and their strong emphasis on innovation and customer service" said Gary Kusumi, President and Chief Executive Officer - Personal Lines, of GMAC Insurance. "By teaming with Homesite, we are able to expand our marketing of homeowners insurance, which helps to enhance our auto insurance sales proposition and strengthen our customer relationships."
Homesite Insurance will provide all underwriting functions, a distributed claims system and will participate in developing marketing programs for homeowners insurance to be sold under the GMAC Insurance brand. Homesite will use its sophisticated, proprietary underwriting and catastrophe management models to help manage its portfolio. Homesite has relationships with a number of the world's leading reinsurers as part of its risk management program.
Charlie Kline, Homesite's Chief Executive Officer, said, "Partnering with the GMAC organization is a pivotal development for Homesite. GMAC is a leading brand because of its customer service orientation and commitment to delivering high quality products. By partnering with Homesite, GMAC validates our technology platform as well as our own dedication to the highest level of customer service. We look forward to a long and successful relationship with GMAC."
Homesite Insurance also announced today that it has launched Apply-'n-BuyTM on its website, Homesite.com. Apply-'n-Buy is a proprietary insurance technology that makes Homesite the first insurance company in the U.S. to enable customers to purchase homeowners and renters insurance directly online, during a single visit. The entire process, from completing a short application to printing a proof of coverage, typically takes 5 minutes for renters and 10 minutes for homeowners. For customers seeking to speak with a licensed insurance advisor, Homesite also has a staff of expert representatives available by phone.
Homesite is a specialized insurer of homes, designed specifically to enable customers to access its products and services in any way they prefer, including 100% through the Internet.
Homesite Insurance Group was formed in 1997 and launched in 1999, and is dedicated to providing U.S. consumers with low-priced homeowners insurance coverage and outstanding service. Homesite's insurance products are marketed through affinity groups, employers and selected service partners, as well as directly to consumers. The company is currently marketing in eight states, and is on schedule to expand throughout much of the U.S. this year.
Homesite was launched with equity commitments of more than $200 million from an investment group led by Morgan Stanley Dean Witter Private Equity, the private equity business of Morgan Stanley Dean Witter (NYSE: MSDW). Since its founding 15 years ago, funds managed by Private Equity have invested $4 billion in more than 160 companies around the world. Morgan Stanley Dean Witter Private Equity manages a group of funds that invest in technology companies with a focus on e-commerce, data communications, Internet infrastructure and information technology services.