Premier Financial Corp. Sells First Insurance Group

Premier Financial Corp. announced Friday afternoon it has sold its Ohio-based First Insurance Group to Risk Strategies, a leading national specialty insurance brokerage and risk management firm.

Founded in 1946, First Insurance Group is one of the largest, multiline agencies in Ohio. There are nine locations, including in Youngstown at 4444 Market St.

The location has long been known as James & Sons, which was established in 1921 by C. Gilbert James. James & Sons was acquired by United Community Financial Corp., a holding company for Home Savings Insurance Group, in January 2016. Home Savings Bank changed its name to Premier Bank in July 2020.

Premier Financial Corp. states the agency will continue to operate as First Insurance Group, a division of Risk Strategies.

“We’re excited to bring the First Insurance Group team into the Risk Strategies family,” said Steve Giannone, central region leader for Risk Strategies, based in Boston and the ninth largest privately held U.S. brokerage firm with more than 100 offices. “We see a great cultural and business fit between our organizations, including a similar commitment to strong community support and caring that will fuel continued success across Ohio.”

The amount of the acquisition was not released Friday.

“The First Insurance Group and Risk Strategies teams share a common view on the importance of delivering superior products and services to our clients, driven by local leadership and professionals in the markets serviced,” said Gary Small, president and CEO of Premier Financial Corp. “Risk Strategies’ extensive resources and capabilities, combined with local market expertise, creates a winning combination of experience, insight and customized solutions for insurance clients.”

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.