The major operational changes that took place within State Auto during the 1980s helped prepare the company for the dynamic decade of the 1990s. State Auto acquired the Milbank Insurance Company of Milbank, SD, and the Midwest Security Insurance Company of Onalaska, WS, and purchased the Farmers Casualty Company and its nonstandard auto subsidiary, Mid-Plains Insurance Company. These acquisitions allowed State Auto to enter, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Utah, Wisconsin, and Iowa as well as expansion into Kansas.
1991 One of the most dramatic changes in company history was the initial public offering of State Auto Financial Corporation, which took the company into a new world of shareholders, stock analysts, and the like. Along with the general public, employees were given the opportunity to become owners of their company through an Employee Stock Purchase Plan.
1992 State Auto National (SAN) was launched in Ohio to take advantage of the growing and profitable nonstandard auto market. SAN adhered to key State Auto philosophies such as commitment to the independent agency system and prolific service. By 1996, National would be operating in eight states.
1993 State Auto introduced a new incentive program for agencies called the Inner Circle. Only a select group of agencies qualified for this elite "circle," measured by agency growth, profitability and customer service accomplishments for eligibility.
1996 State Auto celebrated its 75th anniversary and entered its 23rd state of operation in Oklahoma. In May, Robert H. (Bob) Moone was elected president and COO of the State Auto companies; Bob Bailey retained the title of chairman and CEO. State Auto introduced the PaceSetter producer training program designed for new agency producers. An immediate success, this revolutionary program featured a two-week training session at the home office, plus a year-long intensive coaching process with all participants.
1999 State Auto approached the new millennium with total confidence, thanks to major Year 2000 conversion efforts begun early in the decade. Come January 1, 2000, the conversion was seamless.
At left: Robert H. Moone (left) and Robert L. Bailey. Bailey was elected president of the State Auto companies in in 1983, and later was named chairman and CEO. He retired in 2000. Moone was elected president in 1996, and was later named chairman and CEO. He retired in 2006.