“I am so proud to work alongside the nearly 500 employees who work so hard in the service of our membership and the nearly 800 independent insurance brokerage firms who connect us and serve you so well.”


Dear Fellow Members,

For the tenth year, I have the privilege of sharing with you the most recent year’s activities and results of your insurance company. It was a year where we had many opportunities to fulfill our purpose of making you smarter about risk, safer from preventable hazards and more resilient when things do happen—all with the hope that you can pursue what you are passionate about with greater confidence.

It can be tempting in any business to reflect upon a year through facts and figures, especially in a business like insurance where large sums of data are essential for sound decision-making. We will certainly share a lot of information about premiums and claims data, but our business is all about people. This year we have the opportunity to share more of your stories that will hopefully enlighten the membership with opportunities to prevent future claims.

I’m also excited to share stories of the extraordinary dedication of the men and women of PURE. I am so proud to work alongside the nearly 500 employees who work so hard in the service of our membership and the nearly 800 independent insurance brokerage firms who connect us and serve you so well.


It felt like every month—sometimes every week—we were preparing to respond to a devastating weather event in a different part of the country. A massive hailstorm or a hurricane can draw resources away from the importance of serving the routine needs of our membership and create a “whack-a-mole” scenario where we are chasing one response at the expense of our everyday service demands. In 2016, we accelerated the staffing of full-time catastrophe adjusters who have the talents and the personal flexibility to travel the country to ensure that we deliver the same level of professionalism during a hurricane as we would during a more personal, localized event. And this team was busy in 2016.

We responded to 33 distinct hailstorm events that caused nearly $42,000,000 in damage. These are complicated losses and damage may not be noticed for months. We are actively building tools that combine aerial imaging and detailed weather data that will allow us to alert members to likely roof damage. This allows us to promptly begin repairs on damaged roofs and reduces the need for costly engineering services to verify damage.

Hurricane Matthew severely affected our membership on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. We handled more than 500 claims at a cost to PURE that was greater than $15,000,000. The cost was even greater when you consider the financial impact of sizable hurricane deductibles borne by our membership. It can be expensive to insure luxury properties in coastal areas—and these hurricane deductibles keep premiums from being even higher, but they came as a bit of a surprise to more than a few members. Our network of independent brokers performs well, gives sound advice and educates our members about how their coverage works. They can do even more if we give them more product choices. Based on member feedback, we are exploring options for lower hurricane deductibles, albeit at a higher premium.

Damage from burst pipes created claims totaling more than $32,000,000. Considering how mild the winter was, this was not a good result. Our Risk Management team is exploring more and more solutions to automatically shut off the flow of water to prevent these losses (or at least reduce their severity) as well as encourage our membership to maintain higher heat settings on those cold days. More than half of you insure more than one home with us, so we should be better at helping you manage risk in a home that is often unoccupied. We’re going to improve.


Most of the claims we handle are not the result of some widespread weather event, but of a much more local and personalized nature.

We handled more than 12,000 car accidents and other types of losses to vehicles. Our team of more than 50 PURE Member Advocates® was able to settle more than half of those claims with the same person who answered the original phone call. That is unheard of in an industry that is typically designed to take a message, forcing you to tell your story to another person. We have been engaged in strategies to help our members help their families end the risks of distracted driving. Having a 16-year-old driver in my household has motivated me to be more diligent in this area. The auto insurance industry is anticipating its gradual demise due to safer—and eventually autonomously driven—vehicles. In the meantime, cell phones are ensuring that insurance is used more than ever. We need to reduce the instances of distracted driving—for everybody’s sake.

2016 saw an increase in the frequency of large fires with total claim payments exceeding $30,000,000 (and the start of 2017 is continuing that trend). We responded to 13 fires with an actual paid or estimated rebuilding cost greater than $1,000,000. The financial cost is only part of the equation. Our Member Advocates and Claims Adjusters are learning more and more about human resiliency and the importance of helping you return to normalcy after a traumatic event. We want you to have the money you need to repair or replace damaged property, a partner to help you save time as you face the rebuilding process and a friend to help you recover.

In the pages that follow, I hope you will find the stories shared by your fellow PURE members to be an informative look at how to prevent future losses—or at least provide comfort knowing you have a strong and compassionate partner if a loss were to happen.


We continue to make it easier to repair your car after an accident. Members used PURE Express more than 1,200 times. This mobile app allows members, after a minor accident, to snap a few pictures and have a firm estimate of repair costs in a matter of hours. I hope you can avoid the collision, but if not, I encourage you to try PURE Express and save some time.

We replaced our online payment system with a more flexible and intuitive system that links to your Member Portal account. We even made it easier to pay installments with a credit card (subject to a minimum amount), which addresses one of the more frequent requests we get.

We have just released an electronic signature capability. While this may be more useful for new members just signing up, it might come in handy when you have a claim, or when adding new policies or any newly required regulatory paperwork.

We created a new business unit called PURE Programs. This underwriting and service facility allows us to satisfy some of the high-risk needs of our members (and prospective members). We provide a similar standard of policy administration, billing, risk management and claims services, but we allow the risks to be underwritten by third parties who feel comfortable with the increased exposures at higher prices. We started by insuring homes in Florida that may not be fully mitigated against hurricanes, might be rented for most of the year or face other increased risk factors. We’re less than a year in, but the solutions have been very well received.

The parent company of PURE’s Attorney-in-Fact has recently reached an agreement to acquire a fine-arts services company, The Haven Art Group. I’ve known the CEO and Founder, Claire Marmion, for many years and have great respect for her and her team. Today, Haven operates in two areas: they handle insurance claims for museums, galleries and private collectors who need expertise in restoration and valuation, and they provide curatorial services to help private collectors manage all aspects of their collection, including preparation of valuations, catalogues and other documentation, as well as coordinating the shipping and installation of works. PURE has used Haven for years to complement our claims team. Going forward, while Haven will continue to serve commercial insurance clients as a way to allow them to hone their skills and stay current with the latest and greatest techniques in restoring, preserving and enhancing the value of art, the majority of their time will be spent adding value to the thousands of PURE members with substantial collections of artwork and valuable jewelry.

Your enthusiasm continues to be one of our primary measures of success. Our Net Promoter Score increased again to 67.4.


In 2016, the trophy case for the PURE team became a bit more crowded.

We were recognized for the working environment at PURE. I believe strongly that you should care about this as you evaluate us. A highly engaged workforce means we rarely (if ever) reassign a claim due to a resignation. It means our team will go above and beyond to serve you because they realize that serving you is the reason for our existence. Fortune Magazine included PURE in its list of 40 Best Places to Work in Financial Services and recognized PURE as a top employer for women. SmartCEO included PURE among its winners for Best Corporate Culture.

We were recognized for growth and innovation. Inc. Magazine named us to their list of 5,000 Fastest-Growing Companies in America. We won two awards for innovation from the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies (NAMIC). They applauded the efforts we took to educate our members about cyber risks and our proactive engagement through The PURE Situation Room™. NAMIC has been an important and highly respected partner since our founding, and we very much appreciate the recognition from such a great organization. We were also included in SmartCEO’s Future 50 list of companies that are making an impact in their markets.

Arguably, the highlight among all of our awards came early in the year when The Family Wealth Reportawarded PURE as the 2016 best insurer for high net worth families. A prestigious group of independent wealth management professionals cited our commitment to transparency and efforts to reduce conflicts as the primary reasons we have separated ourselves from other insurers in the category. (Spoiler alert: Just before going to print with this report, PURE won the 2017 award as well.)


Our financial results for 2016 were excellent. We grew direct written premiums by over 30% to just over $640,000,000, and we produced a solid underwriting result with a PURE Group Net Combined Ratio of 99.8%.

These results do not include the impact of surplus contributions, which continue to build our financial strength and allow us to price our products competitively. And it does not include our improved investment results. We significantly increased our invested assets and became more fully invested. We enjoyed almost $15,000,000 of returns from investment activities (before the cost of surplus notes). PURE saw surplus capital grow from operations by almost $35,000,000.

We also executed our rights to surplus notes issued to member companies of XL Catlin, one of the minority investors in our holding company. This low-cost source of capital is just one of the many ways our relationship with XL Catlin benefited us in 2016. Our investors (Stone Point Capital, KKR and XL Catlin) continue to believe they will be rewarded if we pursue our membercentric strategy.

In total, the statutory surplus capital of the PURE Group of Insurance Companies grew to over $312,000,000 at the end of 2016, with most of that growth occurring within PURE. I’m delighted to share that we have received approval from our regulators to make an allocation of $25,000,000 into Subscriber Savings Accounts. This marks the fifth consecutive year of allocations and a larger allocation than all previous combined.

I feel like every year I share my optimism and enthusiasm for the year(s) ahead, and this year is no different. We see so much opportunity to add new capabilities and to enhance the service we offer our membership. We have a strong and deep leadership team, and we see opportunities for continuous improvement throughout all aspects of our company. Our network of fiercely independent brokers is stronger than ever and ready to put your interests first. The stars are aligning for another great year for your insurance company.

On behalf of our entire team, I want to share what a privilege it is to serve you all, and I thank you for your continued support of PURE.


Ross Buchmueller, President & CEO