News Release

New Jersey Department of
Banking and Insurance
Commissioner Holly C. Bakke

For Immediate Release: November 18, 2004

For Further Information:: Mary Cozzolino - (609) 292-5064

Reforms Pave the Way for Progress
in Auto Insurance Marketplace

High Point Insurance Opens New Facility

RED BANK – Banking and Insurance Commissioner Holly C. Bakke today announced that competition is working for New Jersey drivers as more companies make further investments in the auto insurance marketplace. Bakke joined officials of High Point Insurance Companies as they celebrated its first anniversary by opening a new facility in Red Bank.

“The reforms enacted in June 2003 led the way for insurance carriers to develop business models that serve more drivers and offer additional choices, and paved the way for greater commitment in New Jersey,” Acting Governor Richard J. Codey said. “These investments not only provide stability for a company’s employees, agents and policyholders, but also help bolster the state’s economy.”

Bakke welcomed the investments High Point and other carriers have made in New Jersey and credited the auto reforms for encouraging competition in the marketplace.

“The reforms not only changed the face of the auto insurance marketplace in New Jersey, but also became a catalyst for economic growth,” Commissioner Bakke said. “Today’s announcement of High Point’s continued investment in New Jersey further enhances the consumer-driven, competitive marketplace we created where companies want to do business and grow.”

High Point’s recent investment to New Jersey is contributed to its growth during the past year. The company, which currently employs a staff of 500, has appointed more than 40 new agents this year, doubling the number of community agents serving New Jersey drivers. High Point, the fifth largest insurer in the state, wrote 25,000 new policies during the past year, bringing their total number of covered vehicles to more than 400,000.

High Point Insurance Companies was formed last year when Palisades Safety and Insurance Association acquired control of Prudential Property and Casualty Company of New Jersey, Prudential Commercial Insurance Company of New Jersey and Prudential General Insurance Company of New Jersey. At the same time, the names were changed to High Point Preferred, High Point Safety and High Point P&C.

"Looking back on the past 12 months, we are proud of the investments we've made in New Jersey. Our move to a new corporate headquarters and our ability to hire additional staff and increase the size of our distribution force have allowed us to enhance our level of service," said Jim Tignanelli, president of High Point Insurance Companies. "We now look forward to the next 12 months building relationships with our existing and future policyholders."

The auto insurance reforms produced the following results for New Jersey drivers: