When Raleigh, North Carolina-based commercial security firm Risk Management Associates Inc. chose Progressive Benefits Solutions L.L.C. as its employee health benefits broker and consultant in 2007, its need of hands-on placement and advisory services was a major factor in its decision.
“We're a very small business, and the reason I started working with them in the first place was that it's very difficult for small businesses to get the attention they need” from larger firms, said Christine Peterson, president of Risk Management Associates.
In June 2012, Marsh & McLennan Agency L.L.C. bought Progressive Benefits. Shortly after the deal was announced, Ms. Peterson said the principal with whom she'd been working at Progressive Benefits — Raleigh-based division manager Rick Kelly — called to make certain that she knew precisely what the transaction would mean for the security firm's account in the short and long terms.
“Rick wanted to assure me that we would still be an important client to their company,” Ms. Peterson said. “His message to me was that the acquisition would make Progressive Benefits a better service provider by allowing them to draw from new resources, and he was true to his word.”
Since then, Ms. Peterson said her working relationship with Mr. Kelly and Progressive Benefits has remained largely unchanged, if not improved.
In particular, she said the acquisition greatly expanded Progressive Benefits' ability to provide assistance in complying with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
“That was an area where the timing of the deal seemed pretty perfect for them,” Ms. Peterson said. “It really gave them a lot of ability in terms of sorting through the legislation, and that lets them share those abilities with us as a small business.”