Argo Group

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Argo Group International Holdings
Industry Insurance
Founded 1986[1]
Headquarters 110 Pitts Bay Road
Pembroke HM 08
Key people
Mark E. Watson III, President & CEO
Number of employees
1,300+ (2011)
Slogan Get there together

Argo Group (Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd)[2] (NASDAQ: AGII[3]), is a Bermuda-based international underwriter of specialty insurance and reinsurance products in the property and casualty market.[4]



Argonaut Insurance was founded in California in 1948 as the Argonaut Insurance Exchange. It focused on underwriting workers compensation for the California construction industry.[5] It was acquired in 1969 by Teledyne Technologies,[6] then expanded into additional product lines and acquired Great Central Insurance.[7]


In September 1986 Teledyne Technologies formed and then spun off Argonaut Group, with Argonaut Insurance and Great Central Insurance parts of the new company.[8] It focused on underwriting large-account workers compensation policies.[9]


In January 2000 Mark E. Watson III, a board member since 1999, became President and CEO.[10] The company moved its corporate office to San Antonio, Texas, in 2001.

The firm acquired Front Royal, Inc.[11] (along with its subsidiaries Colony and Rockwood), an insurance holding company headquartered in Morrisville, N.C. for $165 million in cash.[12] The acquisition added products and underwriting capabilities in areas complementary to Argonaut’s previous products.[13] Then they entered the public entity market by founding Trident Insurance.[14][15] In 2002, they acquired Fulcrum,[16] an excess and surplus lines underwriter[17] from Scor.[18] In 2003 they acquired Grocers from Royal & Sun Alliance USA,[19] expanding their Great Central platform. In 2005 they acquired the renewal rights to business formerly written by Interstate Insurance Group, subsidiaries of Fireman’s Fund.[20] In May 2005 they created Argonaut Specialty to underwrite accounts larger than what Colony traditionally wrote. In 2007 they merged with Bermuda-based PXRE, entering the reinsurance market.[21]

The new company renamed as Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd., and moved its public company home office to Bermuda.[22]

In 2008, Trident Insurance Services acquired Massamont Insurance Agency, which specialized in insurance programs for public entities,[23] expanding Argo's public entity footprint into New England with offices in Greenfield and Boston, Mass. In April 2008, Argonaut Group re-branded as Argo Group. U.S. operations were packaged as Argo Group US. Peleus Re was renamed Argo Re. In Europe, it became known as Argo Solutions. In May, Argo Group acquired Heritage and its Lloyd’s syndicate for $272 million[24] in order to create a broader underwriting platform, with increased market presence as well as an extended geographic capability and distribution network.[25]

In September 2008 they acquired Insight Insurance, a specialist in professional liability insurance for accounting professionals, architects, engineers and insurance agents.[26] In October they established Argo Pro, a consolidation of their professional liability operations.[27]


Argo Group provides primary and excess insurance, reinsurance, and tailored risk products for the managing general agency market.[28] It has four business segments: Excess and Surplus Lines, Commercial Specialty, International Specialty and Syndicate 1200.[29]

Excess and Surplus Lines[edit]

Colonial Specialty
Argo Pro

Commercial Specialty[edit]

Argo Insurance
Argo Surety
Commercial Programs

International Specialty[edit]

Argo Re
Argo Insurance Worldwide Casualty
Argo Insurance Professional Lines
Argo Seguros
ArgoGlobal SE

Syndicate 1200[edit]

Argo International (Lloyd's of London)

Argo Group Gold Cup[edit]

Argo Group Gold Cup.jpg

Argo Group is title sponsor for the King Edward VII Gold Cup, an Alpari Group World Match Racing Tour event held in Hamilton Harbour, Bermuda every October.[30] The Argo Gold Cup is hosted by the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club[31] racing to earn points towards the ISAF Match Racing World Championship.[32]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ " Argo Group". 
  2. ^ "Power Moves: Argo Group International Holdings". 
  3. ^ "NASDAQ AGII Stock Quote". 
  4. ^ "AGII Company Profile". 
  5. ^ "Insurance Works: Argonaut Insurance". 
  6. ^ "Argo Group Historical Timeline" (PDF). 
  7. ^ "Argo Group Historical Timeline" (PDF). 
  8. ^ "Argo Group Historical Timeline" (PDF). 
  9. ^ "Argo Group Historical Timeline" (PDF). 
  10. ^ "Securing the Future". 
  11. ^ "Yahoo! Finance profile: AGII". 
  12. ^ "Argonaut Group Inc. Acquires Holding Company". 
  13. ^ "Argonaut Group Inc. Acquires Holding Company". 
  14. ^ "Bloomberg: Company Overview of Trident Insurance Services, LLC". 
  15. ^ "Argonaut Group Inc. Acquires Holding Company". 
  16. ^ "Argonaut Buys Fulcrum Renewals". 
  17. ^ "Argonaut Group buys French firm's US underwriting business". 
  18. ^ "Argonaut Obtains Renewal Rights to Fulcrum E&S Lines from SCOR". Insurance Journal. 
  19. ^ "Arrowpoint Capital to Acquire US Businesses of Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Group plc through Management Led Buyout.". 
  20. ^ "Argonaut Group Acquires Renewal Rights of the Binding Authority business segment of Fireman's Fund Binding Authority Business". Business Wire. 
  21. ^ "Argonaut Group, PXRE Group plan to merge". Reuters. 
  22. ^ "Insurer Argonaut, Reinsurer PXRE to Merge, Forming Argo Group". Insurance Journal. 
  23. ^ "Argo Group's Trident Buys New England's Massamont Agency". Insurance Journal. 
  24. ^ "Argo Buying Lloyd's Heritage For $272 Million". Property Casualty 360. 
  25. ^ "Argo Buying Lloyd's Heritage For $272 Million". Property Casualty 360. 
  26. ^ "Bermuda's Argo Buys Illinois Based Professional Liability Manager Insight". Insurance Journal. 
  27. ^ "Argo Group Historical Timeline" (PDF). 
  28. ^ "Market Watch: Argo Group". 
  29. ^ "Market Watch: Argo Group". 
  30. ^ "Argo Group to Sponsor 2008 Bermuda Gold Cup". World Match Racing Tour. 
  31. ^ "Argo Group to Sponsor 2008 Bermuda Gold Cup". World Match Racing Tour. 
  32. ^ "Argo Renews". The Daily Sail.