Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company (“Nationwide Mutual”) and Harleysville Mutual Insurance Company (“Harleysville Mutual”) and Harleysville Group Inc. (NASDAQ:HGIC) (“Harleysville Group”) today announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Harleysville will combine with Nationwide. Under the terms of the agreement, Harleysville Mutual policyholders will become policyholders and members of Nationwide Mutual and Nationwide Mutual will acquire all of the publicly held shares of common stock of Harleysville Group for $60.00 per share in cash.
Steve Rasmussen, Chief Executive Officer, Nationwide (Photo: Business Wire)Joining with the Harleysville companies will further strengthen and diversify Nationwide’s business, expand its distribution footprint, and increase its property and casualty (“P&C”) commercial lines business. The combined organization, which will have an estimated net surplus of more than $13.5 billion and over $16 billion in annual direct written premiums, will be well positioned for growth. “This combination brings together two best-in-class companies that share a mutual heritage and a focus on meeting the long-term needs of our policyholders,” said Steve Rasmussen, Chief Executive Officer of Nationwide. “With Harleysville’s expertise in commercial lines and Nationwide’s complementary geographic distribution, there will be a substantial opportunity to increase market share, while also providing our combined agents and customers access to a broader portfolio of insurance, financial and banking products.” “Harleysville is very pleased to join forces with Nationwide in a transaction that will enable us to expand our business for our independent agency partners and to enter important new markets from a position of even greater strength,” said Michael Browne, President and Chief Executive Officer of Harleysville. “We are proud of our 96-year history and the longstanding success we and our independent agencies have enjoyed as a result of our partnership with one another. We remain committed to our trusted independent agency partners and to the independent agency system. I am confident that the combined organization will allow us to deliver the best products and services available to grow our independent agents’ books of business with us more effectively and efficiently. We look forward to working with Nationwide’s talented team and are very pleased that Nationwide has committed to maintaining the Harleysville brand.”