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UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
WASHINGTON, DC 20549

FORM 10-K
Annual Report Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019
OR
Transition Report Pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
For the transition period from              to .             

Commission file number 001-31978 
 
Assurant, Inc.
(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)
Delaware
 
 
39-1126612
(State or other jurisdiction of incorporation)
 
 
(I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)

28 Liberty Street, 41st Floor
New York, New York 10005
(212) 859-7000
(Address, including zip code, and telephone number, including area code, of Registrant’s Principal Executive Offices)

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
Title of Each Class
Trading Symbol(s)
Name of Each Exchange on Which Registered
Common Stock, $0.01 Par Value
AIZ
New York Stock Exchange
6.50% Series D Mandatory Convertible Preferred Stock, $1.00 Par Value
AIZP
New York Stock Exchange
 
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:
None 
 
 
 

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes x No ¨
 
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act. Yes ¨ No x
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes x No ¨
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§ 232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files). Yes x No ¨
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company, or an emerging growth company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company,” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
Large accelerated filer
 
  
Accelerated filer
 
 
 
 
 
Non-accelerated filer
 
 
  
Smaller reporting company
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Emerging growth company
 
If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ¨
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Act). Yes  No x
 
The aggregate market value of the registrant’s common stock held by non-affiliates of the registrant was $6.47 billion as of the last business day of the fiscal quarter ended June 30, 2019 based on the closing sale price of $106.38 per share for the common stock on such date as traded on the New York Stock Exchange.
 
The number of shares of the registrant’s common stock outstanding at February 14, 2020 was 59,823,754.
 
Documents Incorporated by Reference
 
Certain information contained in the definitive proxy statement for the registrant’s 2020 annual meeting of stockholders is incorporated by reference into Part III hereof.


 



ASSURANT, INC.
ANNUAL REPORT ON FORM 10-K
For the Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2019
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Item
Number
 
 
Page
Number
 
 
PART I
 
1.
 
1A.
 
1B.
 
2.
 
3.
 
4.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
PART II
 
5.
 
6.
 
7.
 
7A.
 
8.
 
9.
 
9A.
 
9B.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
PART III
 
10.
 
11.
 
12.
 
13.
 
14.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
PART IV
 
15.
 
16.
 
 
Unless otherwise stated, all amounts are presented in United States of America (“U.S.”) Dollars and all amounts are in millions, except for number of shares, per share amounts, registered holders, number of employees, beneficial owners, number of securities in an unrealized loss position and number of loans.










FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

Some statements in “Item 1 Business” and “Item 7 Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and elsewhere in this Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019 (this “Report”), particularly those anticipating future financial performance, business prospects, growth and operating strategies and similar matters, are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. You can identify these statements by the use of words such as “will,” “may,” “can,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “estimates,” “projects,” “intends,” “plans,” “believes,” “targets,” “forecasts,” “potential,” “approximately,” and the negative versions of those words and other words and terms with a similar meaning. Any forward-looking statements contained in this Report are based upon our historical performance and on current plans, estimates and expectations. The inclusion of this forward-looking information should not be regarded as a representation by us or any other person that our future plans, estimates or expectations will be achieved. Our actual results might differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. We undertake no obligation to update or review any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or other developments. For a discussion of the risk factors that could affect our actual results, see “Item 1A Risk Factors” and “Item 7 Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations Critical Factors Affecting Results.”





PART I

Unless the context otherwise requires, references to the terms “Assurant,” the “Company,” “we,” “us” and “our” refer to Assurant, Inc.’s consolidated operations.

Item 1. Business
Assurant, Inc. was incorporated as a Delaware corporation in 2004.
We are a leading global provider of lifestyle and housing solutions that support, protect and connect major consumer purchases. We partner with leading brands to develop innovative products and services and to deliver an enhanced customer experience. We operate in North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia Pacific through three operating segments: Global Lifestyle, Global Housing and Global Preneed. Through our Global Lifestyle segment, we provide mobile device solutions and extended service products and related services for consumer electronics and appliances (referred to as “Connected Living”); vehicle protection and related services (referred to as “Global Automotive”); and credit and other insurance products (referred to as “Global Financial Services and Other”). Through our Global Housing segment, we provide lender-placed homeowners insurance, lender-placed manufactured housing insurance and lender-placed flood insurance (referred to as “Lender-placed Insurance”); renters insurance and related products (referred to as “Multifamily Housing”); and voluntary manufactured housing insurance, voluntary homeowners insurance and other specialty products (referred to as “Specialty and Other”). Through our Global Preneed segment, we provide pre-funded funeral insurance, final need insurance and related services.
Our Competitive Strengths
Our financial strength and core capabilities across our businesses create competitive advantages that we believe allow us to support our clients, deliver superior experience for their customers and drive sustainable profitable growth over the long term.
Our financial strength. We believe we have a strong balance sheet and operating cash flows. As of December 31, 2019, we had $44.29 billion in total assets and our debt to total capital was 26.2%. In addition, our Global Lifestyle, Global Housing and Global Preneed segments generate significant operating cash flows, which provides us with the flexibility to make investments to strengthen our strategic capabilities and enter into and grow partnerships with our clients.
Client and consumer insights and evolving capabilities support innovation. During our long business tenure, we have developed a comprehensive understanding of our clients and the consumer markets we serve. We seek to leverage consumer insights, together with deep market knowledge and capabilities, to anticipate and identify the specific needs of our clients and the consumers they serve. We intend to continue capitalizing on our consumer insights, as well as to leverage investments in emerging technologies, to introduce new and innovative products and services and adapt those offerings to anticipate and address emerging issues.
Value chain integration. We own or manage multiple pieces of the value chain, which enables us to create products and service offerings based on client needs and provide a seamless experience for consumers. Offering end-to-end solutions allows us to provide additional value for consumers and adapt more quickly and efficiently to their needs. Visibility across the value chain helps us leverage insights to further improve the customer experience and our offerings.
Our Strategy for Profitable Growth
Our vision is to be the premier provider of lifestyle and housing solutions globally. To achieve this vision, we positioned ourselves for continued long-term profitable growth by:
Growing our portfolio of market leading businesses. We leverage our competitive strengths to focus on businesses where we can maintain or reach market-leading positions, achieve attractive returns and grow. We periodically assess our business portfolio to ensure we align resources with the best opportunities and we have identified Connected Living, Global Automotive and Multifamily Housing as key businesses targeted for growth. We intend to grow our businesses by continuing to invest in capabilities and technology which allows us to innovate and deliver superior customer experience, as well as further expanding our offerings and diversifying our distribution channels.
Providing integrated offerings. We provide an array of services that are complementary to our risk-based products. As we adapt our business portfolio and capabilities to respond to client and consumer needs, we expect to continue to drive additional value to consumers by expanding our fee-for-service offerings and evolving our mix of business. We expect to generate a more diversified mix of business and earnings.
Deploying our capital strategically. We deploy capital to invest in and grow our businesses, repurchase shares and pay dividends. Our approach to mergers, acquisitions and other growth opportunities reflects our strategic and disciplined approach

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to capital management. We target new businesses and capabilities that complement or support our strategy, which is focused on expanding capabilities and distribution in targeted growth businesses globally.
2019 Highlights
In 2019, we grew earnings as we added and renewed a number of client partnerships across Global Lifestyle and Global Housing and launched several new product offerings. We had significant organic growth in our mobile business, including as a result of scaling new and existing client partnerships, and a full year of contributions from our acquisition of TWG Holdings Limited and its subsidiaries (as subsequently reorganized, “TWG”). During the year, we also continued to make investments to support the launch of new programs, while enhancing our capabilities to support future growth. For example, we acquired Cell Phone Repair, a global franchisor of electronic device repair stores focusing on mobile device repair, and we are making additional targeted investments in emerging technologies to enhance the customer experience. To support long-term growth, we also launched a multi-year transformation of our information technology to realign our IT operating model and fund investments in our technology infrastructure and cloud capabilities. We will continue to focus on investing in our key capabilities and strengthening our competitive advantage as we look to deliver more value for our clients and their customers
In 2019, we made considerable progress in integrating our acquisition of TWG, generating operating synergies and growing from the scale and expertise we acquired. We also undertook a strategic review of our investment in Iké Grupo, Iké Asistencia and certain of their affiliates (collectively, “Iké”). As part of our initial investment in 2014, we entered into a shareholders agreement with the majority shareholders that provided us with the right to acquire the remainder of Iké from the majority shareholders and the majority shareholders the right to put their interests in Iké to us (together, the “put/call”). In the third quarter of 2019, we decided to pursue the sale of our interests in Iké and in January 2020, we entered into agreements to sell our interests in Iké to certain management shareholders of Iké. The sale is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. For additional information on this transaction, see “Item 7 – Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations – Liquidity and Capital Resources” and Note 5 to the Consolidated Financial Statements included elsewhere in this Report.
Throughout the year, we also undertook capital initiatives to drive shareholder value. In 2019, we returned $426.3 million to shareholders through share repurchases and common stock dividends. In 2019, we also refinanced our debt at lower interest rates. In August 2019, we issued $350.0 million of 3.70% senior notes due 2030, and used the net proceeds, along with cash on hand, to complete a cash tender offer to purchase $100.0 million of the $375.0 million then outstanding aggregate principal amount of our 6.75% senior notes due 2034 and to redeem $250.0 million of the $300.0 million then outstanding aggregate principal amount of our floating rate senior notes due 2021.
Segments 
The composition of our reportable segments matches how we view and manage our business. For additional information on our segments, see “Item 7 – Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations – Results of Operations” and Note 6 to the Consolidated Financial Statements included elsewhere in this Report.

Global Lifestyle
 
Years Ended December 31,
 
2019
 
2018
 
2017
Net earned premiums, fees and other income by product:
 
 
 
 
 
Connected Living (mobile and service contracts) (1)
$
3,768.4

 
$
2,800.6

 
$
2,156.0

Global Automotive
2,873.6

 
1,909.2

 
782.8

Global Financial Services and Other
452.2

 
473.5

 
457.4

Total
$
7,094.2

 
$
5,183.3

 
$
3,396.2

Segment net income
$
409.3

 
$
297.7

 
$
178.0

Segment Equity
$
3,948.2

 
$
4,073.2

 
$
1,967.3

 
(1)
For the years ended December 31, 2019, 2018 and 2017, 55.9%, 55.4%, and 58.7%, respectively, of net earned premiums, fees and other income was from mobile products and 44.1%, 44.6%, and 41.3%, respectively, was from service contracts, including assistance services.


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Our Products and Services
The key lines of business in Global Lifestyle are: Connected Living, which includes mobile device solutions and extended service contracts (insurance policies and warranties) (“ESCs”) for consumer electronics and appliances; Global Automotive; and Global Financial Services and Other.
Connected Living: Through partnerships with mobile device carriers, retailers, multiple system operators (“MSOs”), original equipment manufacturers (“OEMs”) and financial and other institutions, we underwrite and provide administrative support and related services for ESCs. These contracts provide consumers with coverage on mobile devices and consumer electronics and appliances, protecting them from certain covered losses. We pay the cost of repairing or replacing these consumer goods in the event of loss, theft, accidental damage, mechanical breakdown or electronic malfunction after the manufacturer's warranty expires. Our strategy is to provide integrated service offerings to our clients that address all aspects of the insurance, ESC or warranty, including program design and marketing strategy, risk management, data analytics, customer support and claims handling, supply chain and service delivery and repair and logistics. For example, we seek to provide end-to-end mobile device lifecycle services in our mobile business from when the device is received and inspected, repaired or refurbished, to when it is ultimately disposed of through a sale to a third-party or used to meet an insurance claim. In addition to extended protection for multiple devices, our mobile offerings include trade-in and upgrade programs, premium customer support, including device self-diagnostic tools, and device disposition. We also sell repaired or refurbished mobile and other electronic devices. We believe that with the required administrative capability, supply chain, technical support infrastructure and insurance underwriting capabilities, we maintain a differentiated position in this marketplace.
In 2019, Connected Living also included our 40% interest in Iké. Iké primarily provides roadside assistance, home assistance and travel, mobile and other protection products and services. On January 29, 2020, we entered into agreements to sell our interests in Iké to certain management shareholders of Iké.
Global Automotive: We underwrite and provide administrative services for vehicle service contracts (“VSCs”) and ancillary products providing coverage for vehicles, including automobiles, trucks, recreational vehicles and motorcycles, as well as parts. For VSCs, we pay the cost of repairing a customer’s vehicle in the event of mechanical breakdown. For ancillary products, coverage varies, but, generally, we pay the cost of repairing, servicing or replacing parts or provide other financial compensation in the event of mechanical breakdown, accidental damage or theft. We provide integrated service offerings to our clients, including program design and marketing strategy, risk management, data analytics, customer support and claims handling, reinsurance facilitation, actuarial consulting, experiential and digital training and performance management.
Global Financial Services and Other: Our Global Financial Services and Other business maintains a suite of protection and assurance products that deliver a combination of features and benefits for varying customer segment needs. With major financial services clients, we provide value-added financial services in the U.S. and internationally, ranging from credit insurance to inclusive credit card benefits and travel coverages. Although traditional credit insurance has been in decline in North America, it remains a core offering in select international markets.
Distribution and Clients
Global Lifestyle operates globally, with approximately 76% of its revenue from North America (the U.S. and Canada), 9% from Latin America (Brazil, Argentina, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Chile, Colombia and Peru), 8% from Europe (the United Kingdom (the “U.K.”), France, Italy, Spain, Germany and the Netherlands) and 7% from Asia Pacific (South Korea, China, Japan, Australia, India, Singapore and New Zealand) for the year ended December 31, 2019. Global Lifestyle focuses on establishing strong, long-term relationships with clients that are leaders in their markets, including leading distributors of our products and services. In Connected Living, we partner with mobile device carriers, retailers, MSOs, OEMs and financial and other institutions to market our mobile device solutions and with some of the largest OEMs, consumer electronics retailers, appliance retailers (including e-commerce retailers) and MSOs to market our ESC products and related services. In Global Automotive we partner with auto dealers and agents, third-party administrators and manufacturers to market our vehicle protection and related services. In Global Financial Services and Other, we partner with financial institutions, insurers and retailers to market our credit insurance and embedded card offerings. Systems, training, computer hardware and our overall market development approach are customized to fit the needs of each targeted market.
Most of our distribution agreements are exclusive. Typically, these agreements are multi-year with terms generally between three and five years and allow us to integrate our administrative systems with those of our clients.
As of December 31, 2019, no single Global Lifestyle client accounted for 10% or more of our consolidated revenue. However, Global Lifestyle is dependent on a few clients and the loss of any one or more such clients could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations and cash flows. See “Item 1A – Risk Factors – Business and Competitive Risks – Our revenues and profits may decline if we are unable to maintain relationships with significant clients, distributors and other parties, or renew contracts with them on favorable terms, or if those parties face financial, reputational or regulatory issues.
Our Addressable Markets and Market Activity

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The mobile insurance market is a large and growing global market, characterized by growth in the “Internet of Things” and evolving wireless standards, particularly the advent of 5G. While smartphone penetration in the U.S., Japanese and European markets is high, other markets are less mature and present higher growth opportunities. The worldwide used and refurbished smartphone market is also expected to continue to grow.
In addition, consumer needs relating to mobile devices are continuing to expand in scope. We believe there are growth opportunities in bundled protection products, which support customers as they take full advantage of the features and functions of their mobile devices through their daily interaction with a connected world. Customer support, device financing, buyback and trade-in programs are some of the areas that continue to gain traction. Expanded capabilities like repair and logistics, technical support for customers and digital security allow us to create product and service offerings that customers find compelling.
Our business is subject to fluctuations in mobile device trade-in volumes based on the release of new devices and carrier promotional programs, as well as customer preferences. As a general trend, we believe the average smartphone replacement cycle is lengthening, which may increase attachment rates for mobile protection offerings; however, this trend may be reversed based on new technology and innovation.
In the vehicle sales markets, we expect U.S. new vehicle sales to remain relatively flat, while the used vehicle market remains strong and continues to grow. We work closely with our partners to develop innovative offerings that reflect the rapid evolution of the large, but fragmented U.S. market. In addition, new vehicle sales outside of the U.S. continue to grow in most markets.
Consumers are becoming increasingly connected across their mobile devices, vehicles and homes, which is creating a global market for smart home devices and related services. As we enter the “Connected Decade” we believe it will create long-term opportunities for Assurant as consumers’ lifestyles will increasingly intertwine with their connected ecosystems.
In our financial services business, we anticipate continued declines in our traditional credit insurance in North America. Our focus is on expanding our partnerships with leading financial institutions to offer credit card offerings to their customers. The traditional credit and credit card products are actively sold in select international markets.
On May 31, 2018, we acquired TWG, which specializes in the underwriting, administration and marketing of service contracts on a wide variety of consumer goods, including automobiles, consumer electronics and major home appliances. We believe the acquisition has enhanced our position as a leading lifestyle provider, particularly within the Global Automotive business, with new client partnerships, distribution channels and a deepened global footprint across 21 countries, including key markets such as Asia Pacific. We have generated significant operating synergies by optimizing global operations.
Risk Management
We earn premiums on our insurance and warranty products and fees for our other services. We write a portion of our contracts on a retrospective commission basis. This allows us to adjust commissions on the basis of claims experience. Under these commission arrangements, our clients’ compensation is based upon the actual losses incurred compared to premiums earned after a specified net allowance to us. We believe that these arrangements better align our clients’ interests with ours and help us to better manage risk exposure. For additional risks relating to our Global Lifestyle segment, please see “Item 1A – Risk Factors.”
Inventory
In our mobile business, we carry inventory to meet the delivery requirements of certain clients and we provide the guaranteed buyback of devices as part of our trade-in and upgrade offerings. These devices are ultimately disposed of through sales to third parties. Inventory levels may vary from period to period due to, among other things, differences between actual and forecasted demand, the addition of new devices and parts and strategic purchases. Payment terms with clients also vary, which may result in less inventory financed by clients and more inventory financed with our own capital.
We take various actions to manage our inventory, including monitoring our inventory levels, managing the timing of purchases and obtaining return rights for some programs and devices. However, the value of our inventory (as well as devices that are subject to guaranteed buybacks) will be adversely impacted by price reductions, technological changes affecting the usefulness or desirability of the devices and parts, physical problems resulting from faulty design or manufacturing, increased competition, growing industry emphasis on cost containment and adverse foreign trade relationships. No assurance can be given that we will be adequately protected against declines in inventory value. See “Item 1A – Risk Factors – Business and Competitive Risks – Our mobile business is subject to the risk of declines in the value of mobile devices in our inventory, to the risk of guaranteed buybacks, and to export compliance and other risks.
Seasonality

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We experience seasonal fluctuations that impact demand in each of our lines of business. For example, seasonality for ESCs and VSCs aligns with the seasonality of the retail and automobile markets. In addition, our mobile results, which align with the seasonality of mobile device sales and are affected by trade-in volumes, may fluctuate quarter to quarter due to the actual and anticipated timing of the release of new devices and carrier promotional programs.
Global Housing
 
Years Ended December 31,
 
2019
 
2018
 
2017
Net earned premiums, fees and other income by product:
 
 
 
 
 
Lender-placed Insurance
$
1,109.2

 
$
1,149.7

 
$
1,224.9

Multifamily Housing
429.2

 
406.1

 
366.3

Specialty and Other
495.3

 
417.3

 
326.1

Mortgage Solutions (sold in August 2018)

 
116.1

 
257.7

Total
$
2,033.7

 
$
2,089.2

 
$
2,175.0

Segment net income
$
258.7

 
$
150.8

 
$
97.4

Segment equity
$
1,600.6

 
$
1,505.3

 
$
1,536.9

 

Our Products and Services
The key lines of business in Global Housing are: Lender-placed Insurance; Multifamily Housing (which is comprised of renters insurance and related products); and Specialty and Other (which is comprised of voluntary manufactured housing insurance, voluntary homeowners insurance and other specialty products). On August 1, 2018, we sold our Mortgage Solutions business, which was comprised of property inspection and preservation, valuation and title services and other property risk management services. For additional information on this sale, see Note 4 to the Consolidated Financial Statements included elsewhere in this Report.
Lender-placed Insurance: We provide lender-placed homeowners, lender-placed manufactured housing and lender-placed flood insurance as described below.
Lender-placed homeowners insurance. Lender-placed homeowners insurance consists principally of fire and dwelling hazard insurance offered through our lender-placed program. The lender-placed program provides collateral protection to lenders, mortgage servicers and investors in mortgaged properties in the event that a homeowner does not maintain insurance on a mortgaged dwelling. Lender-placed homeowners insurance provides structural coverage, similar to that of a standard homeowners policy. The amount of coverage is often based on the last known insurance coverage under the prior policy for the property and provides replacement cost coverage on the property. It protects both the lender’s interest and the borrower’s interest and equity. We also provide real estate owned (“REO”) insurance, consisting of insurance on foreclosed properties managed by our clients.
In the majority of cases, we use a proprietary insurance-tracking administration system linked with the administrative systems of our clients to monitor clients’ mortgage portfolios to verify the existence of insurance on each mortgaged property and identify those that are uninsured. If there is a potential lapse in insurance coverage, we begin a process of notification and outreach to both the homeowner and the last known insurance carrier or agent through phone calls and written correspondence, which generally takes up to 90 days to complete. If coverage cannot be verified at the end of this process, the mortgage servicer procures a lender-placed policy for which the homeowner is responsible for paying the related premiums. The process of tracking voluntary coverage - including determining whether voluntary coverage is in force, the policy limits in place, the perils insured and the deductibles, and obtaining other required insurance related information - is part of our risk management for our Lender-placed Insurance business. Tracking is needed in order to underwrite the risk we assume, to understand loss exposure and to communicate with appropriate parties, including the lender, insurance agent and homeowner. Our placement rates reflect the ratio of insurance policies placed to loans tracked. The homeowner always retains the option to obtain or renew the insurance of his or her choice.
Lender-placed manufactured housing insurance. Lender-placed manufactured housing insurance consists principally of fire and dwelling hazard insurance for manufactured housing offered through our lender-placed program. Lender-placed manufactured housing insurance is issued after an insurance tracking process similar to that described above. In most cases, tracking is performed using a proprietary insurance-tracking administration system.
Lender-placed flood insurance. Lender-placed flood insurance consists of flood insurance offered through our lender-placed program. It provides collateral protection to lenders in mortgaged properties in the event a homeowner

7


does not maintain flood insurance. Lender-placed flood insurance is issued after an insurance tracking process similar to that described above.
Multifamily Housing: We offer renters insurance for a wide variety of multi-family rental properties, including vacation rentals, providing content protection for renters’ personal belongings and liability protection for the property owners against renter-caused damage. We also offer an integrated billing and tracking platform for our clients and their customers. We also provide tenant bonds as an alternative to security deposits, which allows our clients to offer a lower move-in cost option while minimizing the risk of loss from damages, and receivables management, which helps our clients to maximize the collection of amounts owed by prior tenants.
Specialty and Other: We offer voluntary manufactured housing insurance, voluntary homeowners insurance and other specialty products, including offerings related to the sharing economy. Our voluntary insurance generally provides structural coverage, content and liability coverage. Our sharing economy insurance products include ridesharing, carsharing, vehicle subscription, vacation rental and on-demand delivery insurance products. We are the second largest administrator for the U.S. government under the voluntary National Flood Insurance Program (the “NFIP”), for which we earn fees for collecting premiums and processing claims. This business is 100% reinsured to the U.S. government.
Mortgage Solutions: Prior to the sale of our Mortgage Solutions business, we offered mortgage-related services, including field, inspection, restoration, REO asset management, valuation, title and settlement services.
Distribution and Clients
Global Housing establishes long-term relationships with leading mortgage lenders and servicers, manufactured housing lenders, property managers and financial and other institutions. Lender-placed Insurance products are distributed primarily through mortgage lenders, mortgage servicers and financial and other institutions. The majority of our lender-placed agreements are exclusive. Typically, these agreements have terms of three to five years and allow us to integrate our systems with those of our clients. Multifamily Housing products are distributed primarily through property management companies and affinity marketing partners. We offer our Specialty and Other insurance programs primarily through manufactured housing lenders and retailers, along with independent specialty agents. Independent specialty agents and on-demand delivery and ridesharing companies also distribute flood products, sharing economy offerings and other specialty property products.
As of December 31, 2019, no single Global Housing client accounted for 10% or more of our consolidated revenue. However, Global Housing is dependent on a few clients, and the loss of any one or more such clients could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations and cash flows. See “Item 1A – Risk Factors – Business and Competitive Risks – Our revenues and profits may decline if we are unable to maintain relationships with significant clients, distributors and other parties, or renew contracts with them on favorable terms, or if those parties face financial, reputational or regulatory issues.”
Our Addressable Markets and Market Activity
With respect to the lender-placed market, placement rates have declined as the housing market has improved with industry delinquency rates below averages, resulting in lower net earned premiums. In addition to the overall market, our lender-placed results are also impacted by the mix of loans we service. We expect placement rates to continue to decline in 2020 reflecting the health of the overall housing market and our mix of loans. We will continue to implement expense management efforts to mitigate the impact to our financial results, as well as leveraging our proprietary tracking administration system.
The U.S. renters insurance market is a growing market where we believe there is opportunity to increase our market share and attachment rates with new and existing clients.
Risk Management
We earn premiums on our insurance products and fees for our services. Our lender-placed insurance products are not underwritten on an individual policy basis. Contracts with our clients require us to issue these policies automatically when a borrower’s insurance coverage is not maintained. These products are priced to factor in the additional risk from ensuring that all client properties have continuous insurance coverage. We monitor pricing adequacy based on a variety of factors and adjust pricing as required, subject to regulatory constraints.
Because several of our business lines (such as homeowners, manufactured housing and other property policies) are exposed to catastrophe risks, we purchase reinsurance coverage to reduce our financial exposure, protect capital, and mitigate earnings and cash flow volatility. Our reinsurance program generally incorporates a provision to allow for the reinstatement of coverage, which provides protection against the risk of multiple catastrophes in a single year.
For 2019, our property catastrophe reinsurance program includes U.S. per-occurrence catastrophe coverage providing $1.16 billion of protection in excess of $80.0 million of retention in the main reinsurance program, as well as multi-year reinsurance contracts covering approximately 35% of the reinsurance layers. All layers of the program allow for one automatic reinstatement, except the first layer which has two reinstatements and covers the first $40.0 million of losses in excess of the

8


$80.0 million retention, and include a cascading feature that provides multi-event protection in which higher coverage layers drop down to $120.0 million as the lower layers and reinstatement limit are exhausted. The 2019 catastrophe reinsurance program also includes Caribbean catastrophe coverage providing $177.5 million of protection in excess of $17.5 million retention and Latin American catastrophe coverage providing $423.0 million of protection in excess of $4.5 million of retention. Additionally, in 2019, we placed coverage for a third event in the Caribbean, with protection of up to $27.5 million in excess of a $17.5 million retention. We placed approximately 68% of our 2020 catastrophe reinsurance program in January 2020.
We are also subject to non-catastrophe risk. Please see “Item 1A – Risk Factors – Business and Competitive Risks – Catastrophe and non-catastrophe losses, including as a result of climate change, could materially reduce our profitability and have a material adverse effect on our results of operations and financial condition.”
Seasonality
We experience seasonal fluctuation in several of our lines of business, which are exposed to the risk of catastrophe and non-catastrophe losses. Catastrophic events such as hurricanes typically occur in the second half of the year, and may increase in frequency and severity due to climate change. We also experience some seasonal fluctuation as a result of non-catastrophic weather-related events that tend to occur in the second and third quarters.
Global Preneed
 
Years Ended December 31,
 
2019
 
2018
 
2017
Net earned premiums, fees and other income
$
200.9

 
$
189.5

 
$
181.0

Segment net income
$
52.2

 
$
57.7

 
$
39.6

Segment equity
$
430.6

 
$
423.7

 
$
427.6

Our Products and Services
Global Preneed offers pre-funded funeral insurance and final need insurance. Pre-funded funeral insurance provides whole life insurance or annuity death benefits to fund the costs associated with pre-arranged funerals, which are planned and paid for in advance of death. Our pre-funded funeral insurance products are typically structured as whole life insurance policies in the U.S. and offer limited pay (“Preneed”) or pay for life (“Final Need”) options. In Canada, our pre-funded funeral insurance products are typically structured as limited pay annuity contracts. Product choices are based on the health and financial situation of the customer and the distribution channel.
Consumers have the choice of making their policy payments as a single lump-sum payment, through multi-payment plans that spread payments out over a period of time or as a pay for life policy. Our insurance policy is intended to cover the cost of the prearranged funeral, and the funeral home generally becomes the irrevocable assignee of any proceeds from the insurance policy. However, the insured may name a beneficiary for excess proceeds; otherwise, any excess proceeds are paid to the insured’s estate. The funeral home agrees to provide the selected funeral at death in exchange for the policy proceeds. Because the death benefit under many of our policies is designed to grow over time, it assists the funeral home that is the assignee in managing its funeral inflation risk. We do not provide any funeral goods or services in connection with our pre-funded funeral insurance policies; pre-funded funeral life insurance and annuity policies pay death benefits in cash only.
Distribution and Clients
We distribute our pre-funded funeral insurance products through two distribution channels in the U.S. and Canada: the independent funeral home market or final expense industry through general agents representing those locations, and corporate funeral home partners. Our policies are sold by licensed insurance agents or enrollers, who in some cases may also be funeral directors.
We are the sole provider of pre-funded funeral insurance for Service Corporation International (“SCI”) in Canada and the U.S. SCI is the largest funeral provider in North America based on total revenues. Our exclusive distribution partnership with SCI runs through 2024 in the U.S. and through 2021 in Canada.
As of December 31, 2019, no single Global Preneed client accounted for 10% or more of our consolidated revenue. However, Global Preneed is dependent on a few clients and the loss of any one or more such clients could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations and cash flows. See “Item 1A – Risk Factors – Business and Competitive Risks – Our revenues and profits may decline if we are unable to maintain relationships with significant clients, distributors and other parties, or renew contracts with them on favorable terms, or if those parties face financial, reputational or regulatory issues.”


9


Our Addressable Markets and Market Activity
Growth in Global Preneed sales has been traditionally driven by distribution partners. There is a high correlation between new sales of pre-funded funeral insurance and the number of preneed counselors or enrollers marketing the product and expansion in sales and marketing capabilities. In addition, as alternative distribution channels are identified, such as targeting affinity groups and employers, we believe growth in this market could accelerate. We believe that the preneed market is characterized by an aging population combined with low penetration of the over-65 market.
We intend to increase sales by broadening our distribution relationships and increasing market share in Canada. Through our general agency system, we provide programs and a sales force for our funeral home clients to increase their local market share. In the U.S., we also intend to direct funerals to SCI’s funeral locations and reduce SCI’s cost to sell and manage its preneed operation through its sales counselors and third-party sellers. We integrate our processes with SCI’s insurance production to support SCI’s management of its preneed business. We are also expanding our complementary non-insurance products and services, including our executor assist product that helps executors manage a deceased’s accounts.
Risk Management
Global Preneed generally writes whole life insurance policies with increasing death benefits and obtains the majority of its profits from interest rate spreads. Interest rate spreads refer to the difference between the death benefit growth rates on pre-funded funeral insurance policies and the investment returns generated on the assets we hold related to those policies. To manage these spreads, we monitor the movement in new money yields and evaluate our actual net new achievable yields monthly. This information is used to evaluate rates to be credited on applicable new and in force pre-funded funeral insurance policies and annuities. In addition, we review asset benchmarks and perform asset/liability matching studies to maximize yield and reduce risk.
Global Preneed utilizes underwriting to select and price insurance risks. We regularly monitor mortality assumptions to determine if experience remains consistent with these assumptions and to ensure that our product pricing remains appropriate. We periodically review our underwriting, agent and policy contract provisions and pricing guidelines so that our policies remain competitive and supportive of our marketing strategies and profitability goals.
Most of our pre-funded whole-life funeral insurance policies have increasing death benefits, some of which are pegged to changes in the Consumer Price Index (the “CPI”). We have employed risk mitigation strategies, including the use of derivative instruments, to seek to minimize our exposure to a rapid increase in inflation. However, exposure can still exist due to potential differences in the amount of our liability under existing insurance policies and the amount of protection provided by our derivative instruments and other risk mitigation strategies.
Competition
Our businesses focus on lifestyle and housing products and related services within broader insurance and other markets. Although we face global competition in each of our businesses, we believe that no single competitor competes against us in all of our business lines. Across Global Lifestyle, Global Housing and Global Preneed, we compete for business, customers, agents and other distribution relationships with many insurance companies, financial services companies, mobile device repair and logistics companies, technology and software companies and specialized competitors that focus on one market, product or service. Competition in each business is based on a number of factors, including, but not limited to, scope of products and services offered, ability to tailor products and services to client and consumer needs, product features and terms, pricing, technology offerings, diversity of distribution resources, brand recognition, costs, financial strength and ratings, resources, quality of service including speed of claims payment and overall customer experience. The relative importance of these factors varies by product and market. To remain competitive in many of our businesses, we must also anticipate and respond effectively to changes in customer preferences, new industry standards, evolving distribution models and disruptive technology developments and alternate business models. In addition, across many of our businesses, we must respond to the threat of disruption by traditional players, such as insurers, as well as from new entrants, such as technology companies, “Insurtech” start-up companies and others. For further information on the risks associated with competition, see “Item 1A – Risk Factors – Business and Competitive Risks – Significant competitive pressures, changes in customer preferences and disruption could adversely affect our results of operations.
Ratings 
Independent rating organizations periodically review the financial strength of insurers, including many of our insurance subsidiaries. Financial strength ratings represent the opinions of rating agencies regarding the ability of an insurance company to meet its financial obligations to policyholders and contract holders. These ratings are not applicable to our common stock, preferred stock or debt securities. Ratings are an important factor in establishing the competitive position of insurance companies.

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Rating agencies also use an “outlook statement” of “positive,” “stable,” “negative” or “developing” to indicate a medium- or long-term trend in credit fundamentals which, if continued, may lead to a rating change. A rating may have a stable outlook to indicate that the rating is not expected to change; however, a stable outlook does not preclude a rating agency from changing a rating at any time, without notice.
Most of our domestic and significant international operating insurance subsidiaries are rated by A.M. Best Company (“A.M. Best”). In addition, four of our domestic operating insurance subsidiaries are rated by Moody’s Investors Service, Inc. (“Moody’s”) and five are rated by S&P Global Ratings, a division of S&P Global Inc. (“S&P”). The ratings issued on our operating insurance subsidiaries by these agencies are announced publicly and are available from the agencies.
For information on the risks associated with ratings downgrades, see “Item 1A – Risk Factors-Financial Risks – A decline in the financial strength ratings of our insurance subsidiaries could adversely affect our results of operations and financial condition.
The following table summarizes the financial strength ratings and outlooks of our domestic and significant international operating insurance subsidiaries as of December 31, 2019:
 
A.M. Best (1)
 
Moody’s (2)
 
S& P (3)
Company
 
 
 
 
 
American Bankers Insurance Company of Florida
 A
 
A3
 
 A
American Bankers Life Assurance Company of Florida
 A-
 
Baa1
 
 A
American Memorial Life Insurance Company
 A-
 
 N/A
 
 A
American Security Insurance Company
 A
 
A3
 
 A
Assurant Life of Canada
 A-
 
 N/A
 
 N/A
Caribbean American Life Assurance Company
 A-
 
 N/A
 
 N/A
Caribbean American Property Insurance Company
 A
 
 N/A
 
 N/A
Reliable Lloyds Insurance Company
 A
 
 N/A
 
 N/A
Standard Guaranty Insurance Company
 A
 
 N/A
 
 N/A
Union Security Insurance Company
B++
 
Baa1
 
 A
Union Security Life Insurance Company of New York
B++
 
 N/A
 
 N/A
Virginia Surety Company, Inc
 A
 
 N/A
 
 N/A
Voyager Indemnity Insurance Company
 A
 
 N/A
 
 N/A
(1)
A.M. Best financial strength ratings range from “A++” (superior) to “D” (poor). Ratings of A and A- fall under the “excellent” category, which is the second highest of A.M. Best’s seven ratings categories. A rating of B++ falls under the “good” category, which is the third highest of A.M. Best’s seven ratings categories. A.M. Best has a stable outlook on all of our domestic and significant international operating insurance subsidiaries’ financial strength ratings.
(2)
Moody’s insurance financial strength ratings range from “Aaa” (highest quality) to “C” (lowest rated). A numeric modifier may be appended to ratings from “Aa” to “Caa” to indicate relative position within a category, with 1 being the highest and 3 being the lowest. A rating of A3 is considered “upper-medium-grade” and falls within the third highest of Moody’s nine ratings categories. A rating of Baa1 is considered "medium-grade" and falls within the fourth highest of Moody’s nine ratings categories. Moody's has a stable outlook on all of our domestic operating insurance subsidiaries’ insurance financial strength ratings.
(3)
S&P’s insurer financial strength ratings range from “AAA” (extremely strong) to “R” (under regulatory supervision). A “+” or “-” may be appended to ratings from categories AA to CCC to indicate relative position within a category. Ratings of A (strong) are within the third highest of S&P’s ten ratings categories. S&P has a stable outlook on all of our domestic operating insurance subsidiaries’ insurer financial strength ratings.

Regulation 

We are subject to extensive federal, state and international regulation and supervision in the jurisdictions in which we do business. Regulations vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. The following is a summary of significant regulations that apply to our businesses, but is not intended to be a comprehensive review of every regulation to which we are subject. For information on the risks associated with regulations applicable to us, see “Item 1A – Risk Factors – Business and Competitive Risks”, “Item 1A – Risk Factors – Technology, Cybersecurity and Privacy Risks” and “Item 1A – Risk Factors – Legal and Regulatory Risks.”
 
U.S. Insurance Regulation
We are subject to the insurance holding company laws in the states and territories where our insurance companies are domiciled. These laws generally require insurance companies within the insurance holding company system to register with the

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insurance departments of their respective states and territories of domicile and furnish reports to such insurance departments regarding capital structure, ownership, financial condition, general business operations and intercompany transactions. These laws also require that transactions between affiliated companies be fair and equitable. In addition, certain intercompany transactions, changes of control, certain dividend payments and certain transfers of assets between the companies within the holding company system are subject to prior notice to, or approval by, regulatory authorities in such states and territories.
We are licensed to sell insurance through our insurance subsidiaries in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. Like all U.S. insurance companies, our insurance subsidiaries are subject to regulation and supervision in the jurisdictions where they do business. In general, these regulations are designed to protect the interests of policyholders, and not necessarily the interests of shareholders and other investors. To that end, the laws of the various jurisdictions establish insurance departments with broad powers with respect to such things as:
licensing;
capital, surplus and dividends;
underwriting requirements and limitations (including, in some cases, minimum or target loss ratios);
entrance into and exit from markets;
introduction, cancellation and termination of certain coverages;
statutory accounting and annual statement disclosure requirements;