Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Huntington and Sky: A Combination Play

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Huntington and Sky: A Combination Play

Article excerpt

Insurance wasn't the primary driver of Last year's acquisition of Sky Financial Group by Columbus, Ohio-based Huntington Bancshares. Yet the bigger Huntington--now at $53 billion assets--will certainly see rewards from having Sky on the insurance side of the house, notes Jerry Batt, CEO of Sky Insurance (to be rebranded as Huntington Insurance starting Jan. 1).

"Insurance has always been Sky's strength, Batt explains. "From Huntington's perspective, this addition to the team is a kind of happy, additional benefit to a deal that makes sense for many reasons."

Last year, according to Michael White Associates, then $17.6-billion assets Sky ranked number 18, with a total of $58,545 in insurance brokerage fees, up an impressive 224% from the year before. In the same period, legacy Huntington saw its insurance sales go from $2,636 to $14,887.

Batt credits Sky's strong performance in part to operating in multiple specialty areas, including directors & officers and maintenance & operations niches, as well as by selling professional liability insurance as part of an overall employee benefits program. …

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