About Hartford Fire Insurance Company
The Hartford Financial Services Group is a major US provider of commercial and personal property/casualty insurance. Its commercial operations include workers' compensation, auto, and liability coverage as well as specialty insurance policies. The Hartford also offers consumer homeowners and auto coverage. The group has been the direct auto and home insurance writer for AARP's members for about 35 years. In addition, the company provides group life, accident, and disability benefits. Through its mutual fund division, the firm offers wealth management products and services. The Hartford has been in business since 1810.
The Hartford operates through five reporting segments: Commercial Lines, Group Benefits, Personal Lines, Hartford Funds, and Property and Casualty Other Operations. It also has a Corporate segment that manages third-party assets (including run-off assets) and discontinued operations.
The Commercial Lines segment, accounting for about 40% of total revenue, gets about 40% of sales from workers' compensation policies. Primarily serving small and midsized US businesses, it also provides property, auto, and general liability insurance. Its specialty lines include professional liability, bond, credit, and loss-sensitive workers' compensation coverage.
The Group Benefits segment, bringing in more than 25% of sales, provides employers, associations, and other organizations with group life, accident, and disability products for employees and members. It also provides voluntary benefits including retiree health, critical illness, and hospital indemnity coverage.
The Personal Lines segment (around 15% of revenue) provides auto, homeowners, and personal umbrella coverage. Marketing brands include Open Road and Home Advantage. The division runs The Hartford's program that provides exclusive coverage for AARP members.
Hartford Funds (5% of sales) offers investment products (mutual funds and exchange-traded products) and investment management and administrative services such as product design, implementation, and oversight.
Property and Casualty Other Operations includes the group's property/casualty businesses that have stopped writing new policies; most of The Hartford's asbestos and environmental exposure coverage is included in this segment.
Headquartered in Hartford, Connecticut, The Hartford writes business for customers throughout the US as well as in the United Kingdom, continental Europe and other international locations. The company added operations in about half a dozen European countries plus Hong Kong through its 2019 acquisition of The Navigators Group.
Sales and Marketing
The Hartford promotes its commercial and group benefit products through a network of thousands of independent agents, wholesalers, and brokers, as well as through third-party administrators and trade associations. The group markets personal lines through its AARP partnership, independent agents, and direct-to-consumer campaigns utilizing direct mail, digital marketing, television, and print advertising.
The company's mutual funds team sells through broker-dealer organizations, financial advisors and consultants, defined contribution plans, bank trust groups, and other channels.
The Hartford reported revenue growth each year from 2015 to 2019 after several years of declining sales driven by divestitures. Overall, sales increased 28% between 2015 and 2019. Net income rose more than 24% over the five-year period, despite sharp fluctuations from year to year.
Revenue increased 9% in 2019 to some $20.7 billion on higher premiums earned, net investment income, and fees. Commercial Lines increased by 18%, but offset by decrease in Personal Lines segment by 6% and decrease in Group Benefits by 3%.
Net income rose to some $2.1 billion after the recovery to their fall in 2017. Net income increase was due to the increase of the company's revenue and the small increase on their total benefits, losses and expenses.
The company ended 2019 with $262 million in cash, more than a 115% increase from 2018. Operating activities contributed 3.5 billion, while investing activities used $2.1 billion (mostly short-term investment payments), and financing activities used $1.2 billion via debt and dividends.
The Hartford's strategy focuses on realizing the full potential of its product capabilities and underwriting expertise, becoming an easier company to do business with, and attracting, retaining and developing the talent needed for long-term success.
The Hartford is deepening its activities in core insurance markets, while also adding new types of coverage. Already a Top 3 provider of workers' compensation coverage in the US, the company boosted itself into a top spot in the group life and disability market through recent acquisitions. In addition, the firm moved to reduce its reliance on its workers' compensation activities and broaden its international presence by acquiring specialty insurer The Navigators Group in 2019.
In addition to acquisitions, the firm is adding new organic business. The Commercial Lines segment is diversifying by launching new products for small and midsized businesses, such as a cyber liability offering introduced in 2018. Meanwhile, the Personal Lines segment is working to increase membership through its AARP partnership. The Hartford is also spending cash on data science and digital capabilities to increase productivity and improve customer service.
Like other property/casualty insurers, the company has struggled with increased catastrophe losses in recent years from wildfires, hurricanes, and other weather or man-made events. To help prepare against larger-than-usual claims volumes, insurers must make sure they set aside sufficient reserves and continuously evaluate pricing practices.
Mergers and Acquisitions
The Hartford acquired specialty insurance and reinsurance firm The Navigators Group for $2.2 billion in 2019. The purchase brings a number of specialty lines to The Hartford's operations and expands its business abroad. Navigators operates in Europe and certain emerging markets; it serves as an underwriting agency on the Lloyd's of London market. Navigators' operations are being combined with The Hartford's Specialty Commercial and Middle Market lines to form two new businesses: Global Specialty and Middle and Large Commercial. The property/casualty operations are being marketed under The Hartford brand, while the reinsurance and wholesale businesses will continue under the Navigators brand.
The company was founded as Hartford Fire Insurance in 1810 by a group of businessmen in Hartford, Connecticut. By the 1880s Hartford operated nationwide as well as in Canada. In 1913 it formed its Hartford Accident and Indemnity subsidiary to protect automobiles and property from risks beyond fire. It added life insurance by acquiring Columbian National Life (now Hartford Life Insurance) in 1959.
The Hartford was owned by ITT between 1969 and 1995, when it was spun off to ITT's shareholders. In 1994 the company began selling insurance products to AARP members under an exclusive agreement. In 1996 the company changed its name to The Hartford Financial Services Group. The firm made several acquisitions over the following decade, but it had to shift strategies towards cost-cutting measures (including asset divestitures) after the 2008 financial crisis wreaked havoc on its investment portfolio. The firm was one of three insurers to take bailout funds from the federal government; the loan was repaid by 2010.
After returning to growth, the company started expanding through acquisitions again, including purchases of Maxim Specialty Insurance (2016) and Aetna's US group life and disability business (2017).
1 Hartford Plz
Hartford, CT 06115-1703
Phone: 1 (860) 547-5000
Employer Type: Privately Owned
Executive Vice President, Legal: Alan Kreczko
Senior Vice President: Tricia Mackechnie
Managing Director Construction and Marine: Erin Rotz
Employees (This Location): 3,500
Employees (All Locations): 17,399
Gold River, CA
Los Angeles, CA
Greenwood Village, CO
Lake Mary, FL
Shawnee Mission, KS
Saint Louis, MO
New York, NY
Glen Allen, VA