Torchmark

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Torchmark Corporation is a financial services company composed of six subsidiary insurance companies:

  • American Income (Waco, Texas)
  • First United American (Syracuse, New York)
  • Globe Life and Accident (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma)
  • Liberty National (Birmingham), founding company established 1900
  • United American (McKinney, Texas), acquired 1996
  • United Investors (Birmingham)

Torchmark's corporate headquarters are currently in McKinney, Texas. Until 2006, their headquarters were in the Liberty National Building at 2001 3rd Avenue South. Liberty National and United Investors are still headquartered in Birmingham. Stonegate Realty, a wholly-owned development company, keeps their offices in the Urban Center at Liberty Park, which was developed in partnership with Torchmark.

As an insurance group, Torchmark targets the middle-income ($25,000-75,000/year) market with basic life insurance. supplemental health plans, and various niche-marketed policies for subgroups of their primary market.

Mark McAndrew is Chairman and CEO, replacing C.B. Hudson in August 2005. Torchmark reported $3.1 billion in revenue and $495 million in earnings in 2005. The company trades on the New York Stock Exchange with the ticker symbol TMK. Its rank in the 2005 Fortune 500 was 559, down from 535 in 2004.

History

Torchmark began in Birmingham with Liberty National's founding as the Heralds of Liberty in 1900.

In 1944, the company acquired Brown-Service, a home service insurance company.

In 1956, Liberty National president Frank Samford Sr commissioned Archer and Lee Lawrie to create a one-fifth size bronze replica of the Statue of Liberty for the top of their building. It was installed on September 13, 1958 and tour groups were allowed to take the elevator to the roof to get a closer look.

In 1960, Frank Samford Jr took over the Presidency of the company. In that decade, cancer policies were introduced. In the 1970s Liberty National created Torchmark Corporation as a holding company and acquired Globe Life and Accident.

In 1989 Torchmark partnered with Drummond Company in the development of Liberty Park, a large residential, office, retail and golf development in Vestavia Hills. The Statue of Liberty was removed from their downtown building and relocated to a new tower on a landscaped lawn visible from I-459 near the entrance. The dedication was held on July 4 of that year. The partnership of Torchmark/Drummond went on to develop the Rancho LaQuinta Country Club in LaQuinta, California, but then split in 1999, giving Drummond sole ownership of Rancho LaQuinta and Torchmark sole ownership of Liberty Park. In 2000, Torchmark partnered with Hogan Property Management in the development of Lower Bricktown in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Torchmark Development Company is now called Stonegate Realty.

Move to Texas

On March 20, 2006, the Dallas Morning News reported that the company was planning to move from Birmingham to McKinney, Texas, which is McAndrews' home town. About 50 jobs would be relocated immediately, though the Liberty National subsidiary would remain in their downtown headquarters. Torchmark plans to consolidate marketing and administrative functions of its subsidiaries at the new headquarters, bringing as many as 500 jobs to the McKinney area by 2010, in addition to the 600 workers already at United American. A $27 million headquarters building is planned. McKinney development officials and the Texas Enterprise Fund contributed toward an incentive package of over $5 million to encourage the move.

References

  • Samford, Frank P. Jr (1984) Torchmark Corporation: History of a New Company. Remarks to the Newcomen Society. OCLC: 13053665
  • Feuerstein, Gary (2004) "Birmingham's Statue of Liberty". Accessed March 20, 2006. [1]
  • Goodman, Sherri C. (March 22, 2006) "Torchmark moving to Texas." 'The Birmingham News
  • "Torchmark makes it official - moving to Texas." (March 22, 2005) Birmingham Business Journal

External links