From Northwestern Mutual website:
“The year was 1859. An ox and a passenger train collided just outside Johnson Creek, Wisconsin, and two of our policyowners were killed in the wreck. The claims totaled $3,500, which was $1,500 more than our two-year-old company had on hand. Then President Samuel S. Daggett and his fellow trustees personally borrowed the money to settle the claims, proving that our dedication to our clients is as old as the company itself.”
History taken from Wikipedia:
“Northwestern Mutual was founded as the Mutual Life Insurance Company of the State of Wisconsin on March 2, 1857. Originally located in Janesville, Wisconsin, the fledgling company relocated to Milwaukee in 1859. Shortly after, the company experienced its first two death claims, when an excursion train traveling from Janesville to Fond du Lac, Wisconsin derailed, killing 14 people, two of whom were policy owners. With losses amounting to $3,500 and having funds of only $2,000, company President Samuel Daggett and Treasurer Charles Nash personally borrowed the needed funds to pay the claims immediately.
Following the accident, the company saw a rapid increase in its sales and an expansion into new markets. By 1865, it was operating throughout the Midwest and had entered the market along the East coast. To reflect this increased presence, the board of trustees changed the company’s name to The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company. In 1864, the company paid its first dividends to policy owners. It again paid dividends in 1867, 1870, and has done so annually since 1872.”
Northwestern Mutual in the numbers:
Written life insurance premiums over: $9.5 billion
American market share: 6.5%
Consolidated revenue: $26.7 billion
Policy holder dividends: $5.5 billion
- Life insurance policy holders received nearly $5 billion
- Company used 75% of that to purchase more Northwestern Mutual insurance products.