Business Analysis of 20th Century Insurance

3034 Words7 Pages

Business Analysis of 20th Century Insurance

Table of Contents

History, Position, Targeted Market, Goals Page 3

Northridge Earthquake, Crisis Page 4

Comeback Kid, Results of PR Campaign Page 6

Developing a Crisis Plan, Page 7

Crisis Team, Milestones for Communication Page 8

Issues Page 9

Plan Approval, Anticipated competitive responses Page 11

Recommended press release Page 14

References Page 15

Appendix A Page 16


20th Century Insurance was established in 1958 and was the first company of its kind to sell automobile insurance without a middleman, known in the industry as a broker or agent. This direct sales approach allowed 20th to offer insurance at a much lower premium than its competitors. To date, 20th Century Insurance is still recognized as one of the most economical full service automobile insurers in the California market.


In terms of market share, 20th Century is the fifth-largest car insurer in the state. The company's credit rating was recently upgraded from a B- to BBB+ and its stock is being traded around $21.50.

20th Century is also among the Valley's (headquarters office location) largest firms in both market capitalization and employees. The company currently employs in over 2,000 people.

Targeted market

For the first 30 years of the company's existence it enjoyed huge profits from selling only automobile insurance. These large profits were achieved, due in part, to its targeted market which are generally people in the age range of 30-60 who are classified as a low risk "good drivers". The company's structure of selling insurance directly to the customer while providing excellent customer service is also a driving force to its success.

In 1982 the company began offering homeowner's insurance and this venture also proved to be financially successful for the company. The vast majority of the homes insured by 20th Century are located in the Valley cites and at one time the homeowner's insurance made up about 10% of the company's business, however, to date it onl...

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Gross, A. (1998). Catastrophe planning: An essential part of comprehensive risk management. Insurance Advocate

Kamer, L. (1997). Crisis planning's most important implement: The Drill.

Communication World

Littlejohn, F. Robert (1983). Crisis Management a Team Approach

New York: AMA Management Briefing.

Newsom, D., Turk-Vanslyke, J., & Druckeberg, D. (1996). This is PR: The realities of public relations 6ed. United States: Wadsworth Publishing

Sanders, E. (1994). Some hard lessons in survival: Insurer faces own problems during quake. Daily News

Schnaible, R. (1994) 20th Century Times: Earthquake!, January

Shinkman, R. (1996) 20th Century bounces back to solid profitability:Insurer's 1996 net income may hit $100 million., Los Angeles Business Journal April 29-May 5

Sparks, D. (1995) On the Road Again. Financial World, December 5

Stavro, B. (1995) 20th Century on the Rebound After Settling Quake Claims. Los Angles Times September 12

Sullivan, B.(1999) Daily News: Comeback for 20th Century Insurance, January 13

Yoshitake, D. 20th Century puts quake trials behind. Daily News

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that 20th century insurance was established in 1958 and was the first company of its kind to sell automobile insurance without a middleman.
  • Explains that 20th century insurance was a financially healthy company that was expanding its business by selling insurance in other states such as, arizona, nevada and oregon. all plans for growth were immediately put on hold due to the january 17, 1994, magnitude-6.7, northridge earthquake.
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