As the landscape of insurance and benefits brokers continues to become more consolidated and focused on larger and national firms, it is becoming increasingly more difficult for smaller mid-market employers to find a partner to help them navigate the myriad of ever-changing plans, requirements, and choices to best suit their business.
Colt Employee Benefits (CEB) was founded in 1983 by Samuel G. Colt to bring large case consulting techniques and analysis to smaller mid-market employer plans, which were typically an afterthought for national and large regional insurance brokerage firms which were primarily focused on big employers.
There was an unsatisfied need among smaller employers for a higher level of ingenuity and creativity to help them control rapid premium cost increases and better manage ever increasing regulatory complexity. This trend has only increased over time and now also impacts smaller employer plans. CEB principals also recognized early on the increasing role and opportunity technology represented in day-to-day benefit plan management.
CEB was founded on these beliefs and their client-first, technology-based approach continues today to be the key reason clients work with the boutique firm. CEB’s guiding principles: ingenuity & creativity, taming regulatory complexity, and leveraging of technology tools to reduce the client’s administrative burdens.
Clients of CEB realize firsthand the benefits of working alongside CEB’s principals, who are true thought leaders in their industry and who take a “hands-on” approach to each and every client engagement.
Some examples of this approach at work:
Private exchange: CEB and four other firms created one of the national’s first private exchanges (or purchasing co-opts) to bring large case pricing to medium and small employers. Benefits Alliance was founded in the mid 1990’s and included online enrollment and benefits administration outsourcing. The business operated successfully through the 1990’s and was eventually sold to a consortium of leading venture capital firms.
Industry specific pooling: CEB built and marketed EduCare, a large pooled consortium of school districts in the Central Valley and Bay Area with upwards of 10,000 insured members and 5-year rolling rate guarantees & caps. This pricing approach became so attractive that EduCare was expanded to allow large national consulting firms to enroll their clients.
CEB has provided benefit technology tools to Google, Intuit, CNET, Fry’s Electronics, Marvel, California Banker’s Association’s 200 member banks, and others. CEB developed a full suite of benefits administration outsourcing services and online enrollment. This became an independent company that handled upwards of $200 million per year of client premium remittances to carriers. The company was eventually sold to a large publically traded payroll company.