Safeco Insurance


Seattle, Washington saw something completely new and different when the Safeco Company was founded there in 1923. Hawthorne K. Dent was a property and casualty insurer who decided to form the company himself. Three decades later the company changed names to the Selective Auto and Fire Insurance Company of America, better known as SAFECO. This company was located in a main building in Seattle, but later moved to an 8 story building in Brooklyn, which served as their headquarters. In 1957, the company began selling different types of insurance to customers. For eleven years they continued to sell insurance under their older name, before changing the name slightly to Safeco. They also began offering commercial credits and mutual funds to the general public during this period.

The company has changed and developed during the years since it was first created. The company purchased the American States Financial Corporation in 1997, and later purchases the WM Life Insurance Company from Washington Mutual. A few years later the company purchased R.F. Bailey (Underwriting Agencies) Limited of London. A complete restructure of the company was needed following a severe economic downturn. This resulted in the company laying off almost 40% of their employees and selling off their commercial credit operations in 2001.

On March 15, 2004 the company sold its life insurance and investment businesses divisions, which where by far their most profitable divisions. Two years later they announced that they would be consolidating the rest of their company. Safeco announced one year later that the Microsoft Corporation would be buying its Redmond Campus. They also announced that they would use around 1300 employees in a brand new 125 square foot office right across the street.
Safeco History
Safeco was originally formed in 1923 by a name named Hawthorne K. Dent. Dent believed that he was about to make a new way of doing business. His place called for an organized group to take over the responsibility and financial stability of a stock company. The stock company would handle the risk underwriting, while his group handled the rest. While other insurance carriers worked out of metropolitan cities in the Northeast such as New York City, Hawthorne decided to base his headquarters in Seattle, which surprised many people. Hawthorne's company did not begin selling life insurance until 1957, but in the years that followed, the company saw a record amount of growth as well as a strong development.
A variety of financial services and mutual fund services were added during the 1960s, to give the company a more diverse portfolio. In 1997 the company increased their diversity by taking over the American States Financial Corporation. The company increased their visibility quite a bit the following year when they purchased the naming rights to the Seattle Mariners baseball field. Currently the company is working on growing even further and faster, and becoming more popular with the general public. Today they are working on meeting the needs of homeowners, drivers, and owners of small and mid-sized companies.
Safeco in the Workplace
Safeco believes in finding the best possible employees, and using the talents those employees possess. They feel that all of their employees are unique, be it in their gender, marital status, race, religion, personal values, or national origin. To increase the diversity of their employees, the company hires people from a variety of different backgrounds. They offer a variety of programs, and a different type of person or group of people runs each program. They also believe that their employees will remain successful by taking advantage of the focus groups they use. Safeco uses a number of different employees within their company, including people from a variety of different backgrounds. Each one of those employees is meant to represent a different type of customer who uses the company.
The products they design are created to work for a different type of customer, with some products being especially stylized. They want to increase their customer base, and have made this one of their main goals. They also want to show how diverse society is, by using a variety of different marketing styles and initiatives. Safeco gives all employees and customers access to the information they need on the company. The company wants to build better relationships with its customers, and have created some specialized guidelines and policies to make that happen. They also work to build bridges with children, women, and people with disabilities.