St. Paul Travelers Cos. is slowly phasing the “St. Paul” out of its name.
“St. Paul” is already gone from the company’s marketing for consumer auto and home insurance, and it will be eliminated next week from advertising to business customers in the U.S. and Canada, too.
Company spokesman Shane Boyd told the St. Paul Pioneer Press said the company will keep its corporate name, logo, and the highly visible “St. Paul Travelers” sign atop its downtown headquarters.
The 2004 merger of The St. Paul Cos. and Hartford, Conn.-based Travelers Property Casualty Corp. created the nation’s second-largest business insurer.
The St. Paul name dates to 1853 when St. Paul Fire & Marine Insurance Co. began insuring individuals, steamboats and wooden buildings. It paid claims from the Great Chicago Fire in 1871 and the 1906 San Francisco earthquake.
The Travelers’ name goes back to 1864, when it became the first U.S. company to insure against accidents. Travelers was the first to offer auto insurance in 1897; St. Paul was second.
The de-emphasizing of the St. Paul name is part of a new national, multimillion-dollar advertising and marketing campaign the company plans.
“It’s a decision by the company to make significant investment in its brand image and to establish a future direction in the organization,” said Michael Klein, senior vice president of specialty commercial insurance. Having two brands for personal and commercial insurance caused confusion, he said.
Company research showed that Travelers was a more recognizable name than either St. Paul or St. Paul Travelers, Klein said.
John F. Byrnes, chief executive of Hartford-based insurance agency R.C. Knox & Co., had asked the company for a year to trim down to a single brand because, he said, St. Paul Travelers was “too wordy, too cumbersome.”
The St. Paul Travelers name will still be used for community and corporate activities, the company said. And business done through Lloyd’s in the United Kingdom and Ireland will continue under the “St. Paul Travelers” brand but could change to “St. Paul.”
Information from: St. Paul Pioneer Press
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