Entrepreneur Eric Bosworth, the founder of Insurance Elevated, a local startup disrupting the insurance industry by empowering independent agents, is partnering with a Fortune 500 company in a $100 million merger and acquisition deal this year.
Bosworth said the monetary amount is based on Insurance Elevated’s current profitability and projected growth He did not disclose further details about the buyer.
Insurance Elevated, which has a Tampa office, offers a complete line of individual life and health insurance products. Agents can build their brand while Bosworth provides a plug-and-play sales system and an advanced CRM insurance solution, which organizes and automates leads and claims.
“I bring the agents to the insurance companies directly so there are no discrepancies. They get bonuses from providers. They can run their own business. I’m just providing them the resources that have helped make me successful,” Bosworth said. “Most insurance companies push agents to buy leads on landing pages from other companies, but sometimes those leads are already sold. I give agents exclusive leads; I never resell them.”
If and when the deal is executed, Bosworth said he would remain as CEO for the next three to five years and retain equity in the company.
Following the anticipated deal, Bosworth plans to create a real estate fund for his agents to participate in and “secure generational wealth.”
Becoming a disruptor
“I would like to think it took me a year to create my agency, but the reality is that spending time in the industry before launching my firm is where it started,” Bosworth said. “We are able to immensely scale because I noticed the deficiencies in the industry and made them my strengths. We have been growing 30% month-over-month.”
He previously worked for Sprint for eight years, moving up the corporate ladder to becoming a district manager.
However, once T-Mobile acquired Sprint in 2020, shifts in the culture and leadership created hesitation for Bosworth, who realized he didn’t want to answer to a chain of superiors.
In sharing his concerns with co-workers, they discussed how they were also working for insurance companies and showed Bosworth their lucrative paychecks.
“I decided to leave [T-Mobile] cold turkey. I made the jump in December after open enrollment, which is the busiest time for health insurance,” Bosworth said, laughing about the timing.
He secured his first gig in the insurance industry at a captive agency in Texas.
A captive agency is a subsidiary that provides insurance to the parent company and its affiliates. Agents are only permitted to sell that agency’s products and cannot contract with other carriers.
“In one year, I learned everything I could about health care insurance, and I wanted to build my personal brand,” Bosworth said. “The captivity made me feel like I couldn’t reach my full potential. I just knew I could do it better.”
In January 2021, fellow agents gathered in his Texas home one night as Bosworth marked up a large whiteboard, laying out the plans on how he would return to Florida and get connected with major health insurance carriers independently. He would also pursue a different avenue – couple health care with life insurance – a sector that is often siloed.
A handful of the agents tagged along with Bosworth in his journey to Orlando, where Bosworth is originally from, and opened a small office.
“We just started doing everything ourselves and committed to a certain volume of clients. We got a contract with insurer Family First Life and independent firms. We tried to get the highest compensation to pay for Facebook marketing and other advertising,” Bosworth said.
The team negotiated additional contracts with agencies and slowly recruited more remote talent to meet the growing client base.
“Insurance companies have been around [since] the Great Depression and the Recession, so I knew insurance was among the safest industries [due to resiliency] to work in, but what comes with that is the reluctancy to change,” Bosworth said. “We have built everything for the agent and have a script for them. Many agency owners are very good at working with clients, but they aren’t good at teaching it to their agents and locking arms.”
Over 150 agents work with Insurance Elevated, which recently expanded its Orlando HQ.
Bosworth’s team has also outgrown their Tampa office at 4950 W. Kennedy Blvd. across from the Westshore Mall. Bosworth is now leasing 6,000 square feet of space in the same building.