Insurance firm merges with Minneapolis company

Published 9:35 am Monday, September 24, 2012

A new name at the top of an Austin insurance brokerage firm’s letterhead isn’t the only change in store.

The business formerly known as Corporate Financial Services Inc. joined AdvisorNet Financial on Sept. 1. The move was two years in the making, according to the firm’s President and CEO Chuck Moline.

AdvisorNet will now be able to deliver better pricing than a smaller agency, he said. The goal of the merger was to offer big city services through local, hometown-oriented agents.

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“It’s a pretty big deal for us,” Moline said, adding the move “drastically expanded” services.

One of the largest changes will be including property and casualty department, which Moline said would be new to the Austin location but important to business owners. The company should begin to implement that change by the end of 2012.

“I would suspect by the second quarter of next year we’ll have something more permanent here,” he said.

In light of the affiliation, the firm has added one advisor. Moline said he expects to bring on two more advisors before the end of the year.

The firm’s market includes clients in a 60-mile radius of Austin, he said. That includes Rochester, Fairmont and the southern suburbs of the Twin Cities.

Moline said AdvisorNet, which has been in business for 50 years, felt like the right fit to partner with his company because of their professionalism in dealing with clients and the expertise they have in each one of their departments.

“We remain an independent agency, but our new name reflects an association with a much larger, more diverse company,” Moline wrote in a letter to his clients at the end of August. “We’re still located in Austin and will continue to be.”

Moline has worked in insurance since 1986, and started CFS in 2000. The firm focuses on business clients ranging in size from five to 2,000 employees.