Three insurance agencies across the state merge to become second largest private insurance brokerage in Minnesota

Three agencies merge to become second largest private insurance brokerage in Minnesota

(St. Paul, Minn.) Feb. 6, 2013 – Johnson McCann of St. Paul, C.O. Brown of Rochester, and the Apollo Insurance Agency of St. Cloud have joined forces to become the second largest private insurance brokerage in Minnesota. Among them, they have a dozen offices, reaching from north of St. Cloud to south of Rochester. All of the agencies offer commercial property and casualty, homeowners and auto insurance, group employee benefits and individual life and health insurance.

According to Pat McCann, who serves as president of the recently combined group, “the merger allows us to combine resources, offer more services and provide a broader base of experience and expertise to all of the agencies’ clients.”

As a result of the merger, the new group also will be able to offer:

  • A full-service property and liability division connected with over 50 insurance companies nationwide.
  • Expanded prevention of risk: A health and wellness division will be created, and a risk and safety consultant will be added.
  • More clout in the insurance marketplace, due to the significant increase in size, which will result in lower costs for clients.

“Some of the clients who’ve seen us primarily as a provider of a particular type of insurance may be interested in the efficiency of working with a single provider for group health, life, property and casualty, dental, disability, long-term care, etc.,” says McCann. “This is an exciting opportunity for the owners of these three agencies, and our collective 150 employees, to serve our clients better.
“Each agency will continue to be the go-to place for their clients, while we also look to bring additional resources from the partnership to bear over time for the benefit of each client.”

McCann and his wife, Gayle, are principals of Johnson McCann, which is based in Saint Paul, Minn., and was recently awarded a Best Place to Work award by the Business Journal of Minneapolis/St. Paul. Johnson McCann has specialized in providing group insurance options to medical groups, nonprofit organizations, corporations, banks, and municipalities. The company employs 22 benefits advisors, consultants, and support staff. More information is available at

The south-central Minnesota agency in the merger is C.O. Brown of Rochester, which is headed by Mark Hayford, president. C.O. Brown Agency was founded in 1917 and is the largest independent insurance agency in southeastern Minnesota. It employs more than 85 insurance professionals, “We have offices in Rochester, Austin, Kasson, Lake City, Mankato, Red Wing,” says Hayford, who has been affiliated with the third agency in the merger, the Apollo Insurance Agency.

The Apollo Insurance Agency, which has offices in St. Cloud, Albany, Melrose, Alexandria and Monticello is headed by partners John Delinsky, Steve Thelen and DeEtte Wurm. The Apollo agencies collectively serve over 5,000 businesses and individuals in Minnesota and surrounding states. “Our team is comprised of over 40 employees. In 2005, the agency was also selected from over 4,000 candidates as the recipient of the “Agency of the Year” award.”