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How FCCI Reached
in Direct Written
FCCI was founded in Sarasota, Florida, on April 1, 1959. It was borne out of necessity by a group of local construction company owners who wanted to save money on the cost of workers’ compensation insurance. The fund was called the Florida Contractors and Construction Industries Self-Insurance Fund, or FCCI.
To be eligible for membership, a company had to be in the construction business as a contractor or supplier. In addition, they had to be a Sarasota General Contractors Association member or an allied affiliate member.
From April 1, 1959, to April 1, 1960, the number of contractors insured by FCCI reached 28, generating $52,079 in direct written premium (gross). Although the fund, described by T.T. Watson, one of the founding trustees, as having “started on a shoestring,” by 1962, recorded its first profitable year in the amount of $2,322. Notably, by 1969, on FCCI’s 10th anniversary, the direct written premium had grown to just shy of $1 million.
In 1976, FCCI sought state permission to expand the workers’ compensation market to businesses in industries outside the construction marketplace. Once approved, FCCI changed its name to Florida Construction, Commerce and Industry to better reflect the broader reach. Another trajectory-changing decision occurred in the 1970s. FCCI made an agreement with the Independent Insurance Agents (IIA) of Florida to help sell its workers’ compensation product. That decision would mark one of the most successful and lasting changes in the company’s history.
Just a few months after FCCI’s 25th anniversary, the adopted changes helped mark a milestone on July 19, 1984, when FCCI wrote $1.3 million in direct written premium in one day. By the end of that year, FCCI wrote over $44 million in direct written premium – writing more workers’ compensation premium than the large national insurance companies. FCCI was listed as Florida’s 106th largest private company in its category. The growth continued, reaching a staggering $226 million in direct written premium just five years later in 1989.
In 1994, after filing with the Florida Department of Insurance, FCCI transitioned from the largest self-insurance fund into a mutual insurance company, another pivot that continues to serve the organization well.
One year later, in 1995, work began on a strategic plan to expand the workers’ compensation product to other states, followed by plans in 1996 to expand into other property and casualty lines of business. Those changes prompted another move in 1998, morphing FCCI into a mutual holding insurance company. This creation was the first in Florida and the first in the nation for a property and casualty insurance company. It provided the company’s management with the ability to look at strategies on a long-term basis. Many of our competitors had to use short-term views, especially those that were stock companies. This gave FCCI a competitive advantage, which continues today.
FCCI expanded its geographic footprint first into Georgia, then Mississippi, where Brierfield Insurance Company was created in 1999. FCCI then acquired Monroe Guaranty Insurance Company in 2000 for Midwest states, and the march for growth and other lines of business took hold.
In 2009, on FCCI’s 50th anniversary, the direct written premium reached $472 million. Just 13 short years later we celebrated another milestone, more than doubling the total to over $1 billion.
As 2022 came to a close, Cina Welch, President & CEO, said, “This remarkable achievement of surpassing $1 billion dollars in direct written premium could not have happened without the partnership of our independent agencies and the trust they and the policyholders have placed in FCCI to provide them with products and services that meet their needs. We continue to look for other opportunities to broaden our footprint through state expansion and products in the near future. FCCI’s legacy and journey continue.”