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Meadowbrook Is Getting Into The Liquor Liability Business

In August, 2015, Meadowbrook acquired Mackinaw Administrators. Founded in 1995, Mackinaw is a Michigan based program and claims administrator that provides tailored insurance and risk management programs and other related services for both group and individual clients. The firm has offices in Michigan and Ohio and services various lines of business including, workers compensation, general liability, medical professional liability and liquor liability. This acquisition was part of Meadowbrook’s strategic goals to coordinate and expand utilization of the Retail Distribution system.

Mackinaw Administrators is the largest writer of liquor liability insurance in the State of Michigan. This program has been in place since 1987, and also offers coverage in Illinois. Continuing this year with this strategic goal, Mackinaw is working to move all of their Liquor Liability business from QBE/North Pointe mono-line liquor liability to Meadowbrook.

The new Mackinaw Meadowbrook Liquor Liability program is being announced to the agents and will be in place by June 13. Mackinaw Underwriters currently has an agency force of around 700. In addition to moving the program to Meadowbrook, Mackinaw is planning to expand the program to include other states, including Ohio, Florida and Tennessee.

The Mackinaw Underwriters liquor liability team is located in the Brighton Office. The Liquor Liability team consists of four experienced staff specializing in liquor liability, Susan Kachigian – Hospitality Program Manager, Tonya Ley – underwriter, Sarah Rush – associate underwriter and Lyndsey Butkovich – underwriting assistant.
Liquor Liability insurance stems from the Dram Shop laws. Many states have these laws which allow an injured person to hold a business liable for providing alcohol to a minor – or to a visibly intoxicated person – who then goes on to cause an accident. The liquor liability policy provides coverage for these types of claims. Mackinaw writes policies for a variety of classes of business – from small “mom and pop” markets to high-end restaurants, nightclubs and even a few gentleman’s clubs.

Mono-line liquor liability classes of business include but are not limited to:

  • Restaurants
  • Banquet Halls/Caterers
  • Bars
  • Boat excursion tours
  • Brewpubs
  • Comedy clubs and other small entertainment venues
  • Golf Courses
  • Bowling Centers
  • Private Clubs & Fraternal Organizations
  • Night Clubs
  • Adult Entertainment (on a selective basis)
  • Package Liquor Stores
  • Grocery Stores
  • Pizza and Sub Shops (packaged sales)
  • Tobacco Shops with alcohol sales (packaged sales)
  • Wine shops and wineries
  • Manufacturers, Wholesalers, Distributors
  • Microbreweries
  • Small distillers
  • Special Events
  • Other commercial establishments where alcohol is sold

While no class of business is specifically excluded, each risk is thoroughly reviewed to make sure it meets our underwriting criteria. Mackinaw offers a variety of limits, ranging from $50,000/$50,000 aggregate/each common cause) to $1,000,000/$1,000,000. In Michigan, the State requires a minimum of $50,000. The Mackinaw Liquor Liability team is excited to transition this program to Meadowbrook and for the expansion to other states in the near future. If you have any questions about the program please feel free to contact Susan Kachigian in the Mackinaw office.

Strategy Overview

The MarketPlus team and TPA Associates retail distribution network are teamed with Mackinaw Underwriters to offer more products, provide broader underwriting expertise and depth of service to our overall retail distribution. This will enhance our fee based revenues.

Looking to expand our TPA capabilities so that we can service accounts that operate on a national basis.

We are actively positioning ourselves to capitalize on program opportunities as they arise and to profitably grow this segment of our business.

Expand our product offerings on a select basis where we have underwriting expertise and can leverage our existing distribution network to add greater value to our distribution partners, and enhance our overall book of business. This will grow premium volume and leverage our existing infrastructure for a lower expense ratio.

Launching a surety direct project where we will begin selling commercial surety products directly to principles (i.e. the insureds) under a distinct direct marketing brand.

As a subsidiary of Fosun, we have access to global investment expertise and ideas. We expect to incrementally shift our portfolio towards more equities and high yield bond investments. This will improve our overall return on our portfolio.

Plan to grow Agency business both organically and through bolt-on acquisitions. Going forward we expect to continue this strategy to gain market share and leverage the agency platform that we have built. This will grow fee business and improve our return on equity (ROE).

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