Annual Report (10-k)

Date : 02/28/2018 @ 5:40PM
Source : Edgar (US Regulatory)
Stock : Brown & Brown, Inc. (BRO)
Quote : 28.07  -0.09 (-0.32%) @ 12:06AM

Annual Report (10-k)

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UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549  
 
FORM 10-K  
 
ý
ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
For the fiscal year ended  December 31, 2017
or
¨
TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
For the transition period from                      to                     
Commission file number 001-13619
 
 
BROWN & BROWN, INC.
(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)
 
 
Florida
 
BBA06.JPG
 
59-0864469
(State or other jurisdiction of
incorporation or organization)
 
 
(I.R.S. Employer
Identification Number)
 
220 South Ridgewood Avenue,
Daytona Beach, FL
 
 
32114
(Address of principal executive offices)
 
 
(Zip Code)
Registrant’s telephone number, including area code: (386) 252-9601
Registrant’s Website: www.bbinsurance.com
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
 
Title of each class
Name of each exchange on which registered
COMMON STOCK, $0.10 PAR VALUE
NEW YORK STOCK EXCHANGE
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:
None
   
 
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act.    Yes   ý     No   ¨
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act.    Yes   ¨     No   ý
Note - Checking the box above will not relieve any registrant required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Exchange Act from their obligations under those Sections.
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.    Yes   ý     No   ¨
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically and posted on its corporate Website, if any, every Interactive Data File required to be submitted and posted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§ 232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files).    Yes   ý     No   ¨
Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K (§ 229.405 of this chapter) is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of the registrant’s knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to this Form 10-K. ¨
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company or emerging growth company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act:
 
Large accelerated filer
 
ý
  
Accelerated filer
 
¨
 
 
 
 
Non-accelerated filer
 
¨   (Do not check if a smaller reporting company)
  
Smaller reporting company
 
¨
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Emerging growth company
 
¨

If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ¨  
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.):  Yes   ¨     No   ý
The aggregate market value of the voting common stock held by non-affiliates of the registrant, computed by reference to the price at which the stock was last sold on June 30, 2017 (the last business day of the registrant’s most recently completed second fiscal quarter) was $5,014,164,392 .
The number of shares of the Registrant’s common stock, $0.10 par value, outstanding as of February 23, 2018 was 137,800,585 .
 
DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE
Portions of Brown & Brown, Inc.’s Proxy Statement for the 2018 Annual Meeting of Shareholders are incorporated by reference into Part III of this Report.
 




BROWN & BROWN, INC.
ANNUAL REPORT ON FORM 10-K
FOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED DECEMBER 31, 2017
INDEX  
 
 
 
 
PAGE
NO.
 
 
 
 
Item 1.
Item 1A.
Item 1B.
Item 2.
Item 3.
Item 4.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Item 5.
Item 6.
Item 7.
Item 7A.
Item 8.
Item 9.
Item 9A.
Item 9B.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Item 10.
Item 11.
Item 12.
Item 13.
Item 14.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Item 15.
Item 16.
 
 

2


Disclosure Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Brown & Brown, Inc., together with its subsidiaries (collectively, “we,” “Brown & Brown” or the “Company”), makes “forward-looking statements” within the “safe harbor” provision of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended, throughout this report and in the documents we incorporate by reference into this report. You can identify these statements by forward-looking words such as “may,” “will,” “should,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “intend,” “estimate,” “plan” and “continue” or similar words. We have based these statements on our current expectations about potential future events. Although we believe the expectations expressed in the forward-looking statements included in this Form 10-K and the reports, statements, information and announcements incorporated by reference into this report are based upon reasonable assumptions within the bounds of our knowledge of our business, a number of factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in any forward-looking statements, whether oral or written, made by us or on our behalf. Many of these factors have previously been identified in filings or statements made by us or on our behalf. Important factors which could cause our actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements in this report include but are not limited to the following items, in addition to those matters described in Part I, Item 1A “Risk Factors” and Part II, Item 7 “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations”:
 
Future prospects;
Material adverse changes in economic conditions in the markets we serve and in the general economy;
Premium rates set by insurance companies and insurable exposure units, which have traditionally varied and are difficult to predict;
Future regulatory actions and conditions in the states in which we conduct our business;
The occurrence of adverse economic conditions, an adverse regulatory climate, or a disaster (such as the recent hurricanes in Florida and Texas and fires in California) in Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and Washington, because a significant portion of business written by us is for customers located in these states;
Our ability to attract, retain and enhance qualified personnel;
Competition from others in or entering into the insurance agency, wholesale brokerage, insurance programs and related service business;
The integration of our operations with those of businesses or assets we have acquired or may acquire in the future and the failure to realize the expected benefits of such integration;
Risks that could negatively affect our acquisition strategy, including continuing consolidation among insurance intermediaries and the increasing presence of private equity investors driving up valuations;
Our ability to forecast liquidity needs through at least the end of 2018;
Our ability to renew or replace expiring leases;
Outcomes of existing or future legal proceedings and governmental investigations;
Policy cancellations and renewal terms, which can be unpredictable;
Potential changes to the tax rate that would affect the value of deferred tax assets and liabilities and the impact on income available for investment or distributable to shareholders;
The inherent uncertainty in making estimates, judgments, and assumptions in the preparation of financial statements in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in the United States of America (“U.S. GAAP”);
Our ability to effectively utilize technology to provide improved value for our customers or carrier partners as well as applying effective internal controls and efficiencies in operations; and
Other risks and uncertainties as may be detailed from time to time in our public announcements and Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) filings.
Assumptions as to any of the foregoing and all statements are not based upon historical fact, but rather reflect our current expectations concerning future results and events. Forward-looking statements that we make or that are made by others on our behalf are based upon a knowledge of our business and the environment in which we operate, but because of the factors listed above, among others, actual results may differ from those in the forward-looking statements. Consequently, these cautionary statements qualify all of the forward-looking statements we make herein. We cannot assure you that the results or developments anticipated by us will be realized or, even if substantially realized, that those results or developments will result in the expected consequences for us or affect us, our business or our operations in the way we expect. We caution readers not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of their dates. We assume no obligation to update any of the forward-looking statements.

3


PART I
ITEM 1. Business.
General
Brown & Brown is a diversified insurance agency, wholesale brokerage, insurance programs and service organization with origins dating from 1939 and is headquartered in Daytona Beach, Florida. The Company markets and sells insurance products and services, primarily in the property, casualty and employee benefits areas. We provide our customers with quality, non-investment insurance contracts, as well as other targeted, customized risk management products and services. As an agent and broker, we do not assume underwriting risks with the exception of the activity in The Wright Insurance Group, LLC (“Wright”). Within Wright, we operate a write-your-own flood insurance carrier, Wright National Flood Insurance Company (“WNFIC”). WNFIC’s entire business consists of policies written pursuant to the National Flood Insurance Program (“NFIP”), the program administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (“FEMA”) and excess flood insurance policies which are fully reinsured, thereby substantially eliminating WNFIC’s exposure to underwriting risk, as these policies are backed by either FEMA or a reinsurance carrier with an AM Best Company rating of “A” or better.
The Company is compensated for its services primarily by commissions paid by insurance companies and to a lesser extent, by fees paid directly by customers for certain services. Commission revenues are usually a percentage of the premium paid by the insured and generally depend upon the type of insurance, the particular insurance company and the nature of the services provided by us. In some limited cases, we share commissions with other agents or brokers who have acted jointly with us in a transaction. We may also receive from an insurance company a “profit-sharing contingent commission,” which is a profit-sharing commission based primarily on underwriting results, but may also contain considerations for volume, growth and/or retention. Fee revenues are generated primarily by: (1) our Services Segment, which provides insurance-related services, including third-party claims administration and comprehensive medical utilization management services in both the workers’ compensation and all-lines liability arenas, as well as Medicare Set-aside services, Social Security disability and Medicare benefits advocacy services, and other claims adjusting services, (2) our National Programs and Wholesale Brokerage Segments, which earn fees primarily for the issuing of insurance policies on behalf of insurance carriers, and (3) our Retail Segment for fees received in lieu of commissions. The amount of our revenues from commissions and fees is a function of several factors, including continued new business production, retention of existing customers, acquisitions and fluctuations in insurance premium rates and “insurable exposure units,” which are units that insurance companies use to measure or express insurance exposed to risk (such as property values, sales and payroll levels) to determine what premium to charge the insured. Insurance companies establish these premium rates based upon many factors, including loss experience, risk profile and reinsurance rates paid by such insurance companies, none of which we control.
As of December 31, 2017 , our activities were conducted in 238 locations in 40 states as follows, as well as in England, Canada, Bermuda, and the Cayman Islands:
 
Florida
41

 
Minnesota
5
 
Maryland
2
California
23

 
Arizona
4
 
Missouri
2
New York
18

 
Michigan
4
 
Montana
2
New Jersey
13

 
Oklahoma
4
 
New Hampshire
2
Washington
12

 
Virginia
4
 
Rhode Island
2
Georgia
10

 
Arkansas
3
 
Wisconsin
2
Texas
10

 
Indiana
3
 
Delaware
1
Louisiana
9

 
New Mexico
3
 
Mississippi
1
Pennsylvania
8

 
Ohio
3
 
Nevada
1
Massachusetts
7

 
South Carolina
3
 
North Carolina
1
Oregon
7

 
Tennessee
3
 
Utah
1
Colorado
6

 
Hawaii
2
 
Vermont
1
Illinois
6

 
Kansas
2
 


Connecticut
5

 
Kentucky
2
 
 
 

4


Industry Overview
Premium pricing within the property and casualty insurance underwriting (risk-bearing) industry has historically been cyclical in nature, and has varied widely based upon market conditions with a “hard” market in which premium rates are increasing or a “soft” market, characterized by stable or declining premium rates in many lines and geographic areas. Premium pricing is influenced by many factors including loss experience, interest rates and the availability of capital being deployed into the insurance market in search of returns.
Segment Information
Our business is divided into four reportable segments: (1) the Retail Segment, (2) the National Programs Segment, (3) the Wholesale Brokerage Segment and (4) the Services Segment. The Retail Segment provides a broad range of insurance products and services to commercial, public and quasi-public entities, and to professional and individual customers. The National Programs Segment, which acts as a managing general agent (“MGA”), provides professional liability and related package products for certain professionals, a range of insurance products for individuals, flood coverage, and targeted products and services designated for specific industries, trade groups, governmental entities and market niches, all of which are delivered through a nationwide network of independent agents, including Brown & Brown retail agents. The Wholesale Brokerage Segment markets and sells excess and surplus commercial and personal lines insurance, primarily through independent agents and brokers, as well as Brown & Brown retail agents. The Services Segment provides insurance-related services, including third-party claims administration and comprehensive medical utilization management services in both the workers’ compensation and all-lines liability arenas, as well as Medicare Set-aside services, Social Security disability and Medicare benefits advocacy services and claims adjusting services.
The following table summarizes (1) the commissions and fees generated by each of our reportable operating segments for 2017 , 2016 and 2015 , and (2) the percentage of our total commissions and fees represented by each segment for each such period:
 
(in thousands, except percentages)
2017
 
%
 
2016
 
%
 
2015
 
%
Retail Segment
$
942,247

 
50.7
 %
 
$
916,723

 
52.0
 %
 
$
867,762

 
52.4
 %
National Programs Segment
479,017

 
25.8
 %
 
447,808

 
25.4
 %
 
428,473

 
25.9
 %
Wholesale Brokerage Segment
271,141

 
14.6
 %
 
242,813

 
13.8
 %
 
216,638

 
13.1
 %
Services Segment
165,073

 
8.9
 %
 
156,082

 
8.8
 %
 
145,375

 
8.8
 %
Other
(208
)
 
 %
 
(639
)
 
 %
 
(1,297
)
 
(0.2
)%
Total
$
1,857,270

 
100.0
 %
 
$
1,762,787

 
100.0
 %
 
$
1,656,951

 
100.0
 %
We conduct all of our operations within the United States of America, except for one Wholesale Brokerage operation based in England, one National Programs operation in Canada and Retail operations based in Bermuda and The Cayman Islands. These operations generated $15.9 million , $14.5 million and $13.4 million of revenues for the years ended December 31, 2017 , 2016 and 2015 , respectively. We do not have any material foreign long-lived assets.
See Note 15 to the Consolidated Financial Statements and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” for additional segment financial data relating to our business.
Retail Segment
As of December 31, 2017 , our Retail Segment employed 4,030 full-time equivalent employees. Our retail insurance agency business provides a broad range of insurance products and services to commercial, public and quasi-public entities, professional and individual customers. The categories of insurance we principally sell include: property insurance relating to physical damage to property and resultant interruption of business or extra expense caused by fire, windstorm or other perils; casualty insurance relating to legal liabilities, professional liability including directors and officers, cyber-liability, workers’ compensation, commercial and private passenger automobile coverages; and fidelity and surety bonds. We also sell and service group and individual life, accident, disability, health, hospitalization, medical, dental and other ancillary insurance products.
No material part of our retail business is attributable to a single customer or a few customers. During 2017 , commissions and fees from our largest single Retail Segment customer represented three tenths of one percent (0.3%) of the Retail Segment’s total commissions and fees.
In connection with the selling and marketing of insurance coverages, we provide a broad range of related services to our customers, such as risk management strategies, loss control surveys and analysis, consultation in connection with placing insurance coverages and claims processing.

5


National Programs Segment
As of December 31, 2017 , our National Programs Segment employed 1,990 full-time equivalent employees. Our National Programs Segment works with over 40 well-capitalized carrier partners, offering more than 51 programs, which can be grouped into five broad categories: (1) Professional Programs, (2) Personal Lines Programs, (3) Commercial Programs, (4) Public Entity-Related Programs, and (5) the National Flood Program:
Professional Programs. Professional Programs provide professional liability and related package insurance products tailored to the needs of specific professional groups. Professional Programs negotiates policy forms and coverage options with their specific insurance carriers. Securing endorsements of these products from a professional association or sponsoring company is also an integral part of their function. Professional Programs affiliate with professional groups, including but not limited to, dentists, oral surgeons, hygienists, lawyers, CPAs, optometrists, opticians, ophthalmologists, insurance agents, financial advisors, registered representatives, securities broker-dealers, benefit administrators, real estate brokers, real estate title agents and escrow agents. In addition, Professional Programs encompasses supplementary insurance-related products to include weddings, events, medical facilities and cyber-liability.
Below are brief descriptions of the Professional Programs:
Healthcare Professionals: Allied Protector Plan ® (“APP ® ”) specializes in customized professional liability and business insurance programs for individual practitioners and businesses in the healthcare industry. The APP program offers liability insurance coverage for, among others, dental hygienists and dental assistants, home health agencies, physical therapy clinics, and medical directors. Also available through the APP program is cyber/data breach insurance offering a solution to privacy breaches and information security exposures tailored to the needs of healthcare organizations.
Certified Public Accountants: The CPA Protector Plan ® is a specialty insurance program offering comprehensive professional liability insurance solutions and risk management services to CPA practitioners and their firms nationwide. Optional coverage enhancements include: Employment Practices Liability, Employee Dishonesty, Non-Profit Directors and Officers, as well as Network Security and Privacy Protection Coverage.
Dentists: First initiated in 1969, the Professional Protector Plan ® (“PPP ® ”) for Dentists provides dental professionals insurance products including professional and general liability, property, employment practices liability, workers’ compensation, claims and risk management. The PPP recognized the importance of policyholder and customer service and developed a customized, proprietary, web-based rating and policy issuance system which in turn provides a seamless policy delivery resource and access to policy information on a real time basis. Obtaining endorsements from state and local dental societies and associations plays an integral role in the PPP partnership.
Financial Professionals: CalSurance ® and CITA Insurance Services ® have specialized in this niche since 1980 and offer professional liability programs designed for insurance agents, financial advisors, registered representatives, securities broker-dealers, benefit administrators, real estate brokers and real estate title agents. A component of CalSurance is Lancer Claims Services, which provides specialty claims administration for insurance companies underwriting CalSurance product lines.
Lawyers : The Lawyer’s Protector Plan ® (“LPP ® ”) has been providing professional liability insurance for over 30 years with a niche focus on law firms with fewer than 20 attorneys. The LPP program handles all aspects of insurance operations including underwriting, distribution management, policy issuance and claims.
Optometrists, Opticians, and Ophthalmologists : Since 1973 the Optometric Protector Plan ® (“OPP ® ”), provides professional liability, general liability, property, workers’ compensation insurance and risk management programs for eye care professionals nationwide. Our carrier partners offer specialty insurance products tailored to the eye care profession, and our agents and brokers are chosen for their expertise. Through our strategic carrier partnerships, we also offer professional liability coverage to chiropractors, podiatrists and physicians nationwide.
 
Physicians: The Physicians Protector Plan program provides professional liability insurance solutions for physicians on an admitted basis in several key states. The program offers comprehensive insurance solutions and provides risk management benefits and claims services.
Professional Risk Specialty Group:  Professional Risk Specialty Group (“PRSG”) has been providing Errors & Omissions, Professional Liability and Malpractice Insurance for over 22 years both in a direct retail sales and brokering capacity. PRSG has been an exclusive State Administrator for a Lawyers Professional Liability Program since 1994. The admitted Lawyers Professional Liability Program focuses on law firms with fewer than 20 attorneys, and the non-admitted Lawyers Professional Liability Program is for firms with 20 or more attorneys and is available for primary or excess coverage. PRSG is also involved in direct sales and brokering for other professionals, such as accountants, architects & engineers, medical malpractice, directors & officers, employment practices liability, title agency E&O and miscellaneous E&O.
    

6


Real Estate Errors & Omissions: writes errors and omissions insurance for small to medium-sized residential real estate agents and brokers in California. Coverage includes real estate brokerage, property management, escrow, appraisal, leasing and consulting services.    
Real Estate Title Professionals: TitlePac ® provides professional liability products and services designed for real estate title agents and escrow agents.
Wedding Protector Plan ® and Protector Plan ® for Events provide an online wedding and private event cancellation and postponement insurance policy that offers financial protection if certain unfortunate or unforeseen events should occur during the period leading up to and including the wedding or event date. Liability and liquor liability is available as an option.
The Professional Protector Plan® for Dentists and the Lawyer’s Protector Plan® are marketed and sold primarily through a national network of independent agencies and also through our Brown & Brown retail offices; however, certain professional liability programs, CalSurance® and TitlePac®, are principally marketed and sold directly to our insured customers. Under our agency agreements with the insurance companies that underwrite these programs, we often have authority to bind coverages (subject to established guidelines), to bill and collect premiums and, in some cases, to adjust claims. For the programs that we market through independent agencies, we receive a wholesale commission or “override,” which is then shared with these independent agencies.
Personal Lines Programs . Arrowhead is a MGA, General Agent (“GA”), and Program Administrator (“PA”) to the property and casualty insurance industry. Arrowhead acts as a virtual insurer providing outsourced product development, marketing, underwriting, actuarial, compliance and claims and other administrative services to insurance carrier partners. As a MGA, Arrowhead has the authority to underwrite, bind insurance carriers, issue policies, collect premiums and provide administrative and claims services.
Below are brief descriptions of the Personal Lines Programs:
Marine: is a national program manager and wholesale producer of marine insurance products including yachts and high performance boats, small boats, commercial marine and marine artisan contractors.
Personal Property: mono-line property coverage for homeowners and renters in numerous states.
Residential Earthquake: specializes in mono-line residential earthquake coverage for California home and condominium owners.
Wheels: provides private passenger automobile and motorcycle coverage for a range of drivers. Arrowhead’s auto program offers two personal auto coverage types: one traditional non-standard auto product offering minimum state required liability limits and another targeting full coverage, multi-vehicle risks. The auto product is written in several states including California, Georgia, Michigan, and Alabama, South Carolina and Tennessee.     
Commercial Programs . Commercial Programs markets products and services to specific industries, trade groups, and market niches. Most of these products and services are marketed and sold primarily through independent agents, including certain of our Retail Segment offices. However, a number of these products and services are also marketed and sold directly to insured customers. Under agency agreements with the insurance companies that underwrite these programs, we often have authority to bind coverages (subject to established guidelines), to bill and collect premiums and, in some cases, to adjust claims.
Below are brief descriptions of the Commercial Programs:
AFC Insurance, Inc.: (“AFC”) (“Humanity Plus Program”) is a Program Administrator specializing in niche property & casualty products for a wide range of for-profit and nonprofit human & social service organizations. Eligible risks include addiction treatment centers, adult day care centers, group homes, services for the developmentally disabled and more. AFC’s nationwide comprehensive program offers all lines of coverage.
Affinity programs: Programs provided for package coverage to booksellers and security alarm installers.
All Risk: is a program writing all risks meaning that any risk that the contract does not specifically omit is automatically covered. The coverages usually include commercial earthquake, wind, fire and flood. The All Risk program writes insurance on both a primary and excess, shared and layered programs.
American Specialty Insurance & Risk Services, Inc . : provides insurance and risk management services for customers in professional sports, motor sports, amateur sports and the entertainment industry.
Automotive Aftermarket: launched in 2012, writes commercial package insurance for non-dealership automotive services such as mechanical repair shops, brake shops, transmissions shops, oil and lube shops, parts retailers and wholesalers, tire retailers and wholesalers, and auto recyclers.
Bellingham Underwriters: focuses on the commercial transportation industry and those that are in the business of supporting it. The trucking program is specifically designed to handle all coverages a trucker on the road might need. Other programs include specialty auto, repair services, forest products and commercial ambulance.

7


Commercial Auto: for vehicles owned by a business (no heavy vehicles or livery operations).
Core Commercial: formerly known as QBE Small Commercial (targets accounts under $100,000 in annual premium), this program offers business owner’s policies (BOPs) and commercial package coverages for a broad range of industries nationwide.
Earthquake and DIC: is a Differences-in-Conditions (“DIC”) Program, writing notably earthquake and flood insurance coverages to commercial property owners. The Earthquake and DIC program writes insurance on both a primary and excess layer basis.
Fabricare: Irving Weber Associates, Inc. (“IWA”) has specialized in this niche since 1946, providing package insurance including workers’ compensation to dry cleaners, linen supply and uniform rental operations. IWA also offers insurance programs for independent grocery stores and restaurants.
Florida Intracoastal Underwriters, Limited Company: (“FIU”) is a MGA that specializes in providing insurance coverage for coastal and inland high-value condominiums and apartments. FIU has developed a specialty insurance facility to support the underwriting activities associated with these risks.
Forestry: logging equipment specialist for mobile equipment typically to the logging industry in Southeast U.S.
Manufactured Housing: package policies in all states for manufactured home communities, including mobile home parks, manufactured home dealers and RV parks.
Parcel Insurance Plan ® : is a specialty insurance agency providing insurance coverage to commercial and private shippers for small packages and parcels with insured values of less than $25,000 each.
Proctor Financial, Inc . : (“Proctor”) provides insurance programs and compliance solutions for financial institutions that service mortgage loans. Proctor’s products include lender-placed hazard and flood insurance, full insurance outsourcing, mortgage impairment, and blanket equity insurance. Proctor acts as a wholesaler and writes surplus lines property business for its financial institution customers. Proctor receives payments for insurance compliance tracking as well as commissions on lender-placed insurance.
Sigma Underwriting Managers: is the nationwide wind catastrophic property insurance specialists for commercial and habitational properties and has over 100 years of combined underwriting experience. The commercial nationwide program is designed to write all types of low- to medium-hazard properties including adult living facilities, hotels/motels, medical offices, shopping centers, restaurants, warehouses and churches. The Florida habitational property program is a high-valued property program for commercial residential accounts.
Railroad: The Railroad Protector Plan® (“RRPP®”) provides insurance products for contractors, manufacturers and wholesalers supporting the railroad industry (not the railroads themselves). The insurance coverages include general liability, property, inland marine, commercial auto and umbrella.
Towing Operators Protector Plan®: (“TOPP ®”) providing insurance coverage including general liability, commercial auto, garage keeper’s legal liability, property and motor truck cargo coverage.
Tribal: provides tailored solutions across multiple lines of business to sovereign Indian nations.
Workers’ Compensation: provides workers’ compensation insurance coverage primarily for California-based insureds. Arrowhead’s workers’ compensation program targets industry segments such as agriculture, contractors, food services, horticulture and manufacturing.
Wright Specialty Insurance Agency, LLC: provides insurance products for specialty programs such as food, grocery, K-12 education and franchise programs that are offered throughout the U.S.
Public Entity-Related Programs . Public Entity-Related Programs administers various insurance trusts specifically created for cities, counties, municipalities, school boards, special taxing districts and quasi-governmental agencies. These insurance coverages can range from providing fully insured programs to establishing risk retention insurance pools to excess and facultative specific coverages.
Below are brief descriptions of the Public Entity-Related Programs:
Public Risk Underwriters of Indiana, LLC: doing business as Downey Insurance is a program administrator of insurance trusts offering tailored property and casualty insurance products, risk management consulting, third-party administration and related services designed for cities, counties, municipalities, schools, special taxing districts and other public entities in the State of Indiana.
Public Risk Underwriters of The Northwest, Inc.: doing business as Clear Risk Solutions, a program administrator of insurance trusts offering tailored property and casualty insurance products, risk management consulting, third-party administration and related services designed for cities, counties, municipalities, school boards and non-profit organizations in the State of Washington.
Public Risk Underwriters of Illinois, LLC: doing business as Ideal Insurance Agency is a program administrator offering tailored property and casualty insurance products, risk management consulting, third-party administration and related services designed for municipalities, schools, fire districts and other public entities in the State of Illinois.

8


 
Public Risk Underwriters of New Jersey, Inc.: provides administrative services and insurance procurement for the Statewide Insurance Fund (“Statewide”). Statewide is a municipal joint insurance fund comprising coverages for counties, municipalities, utility authorities, community colleges and emergency services entities in New Jersey.
Public Risk Underwriters of Florida, Inc.: is the program administrator for the Preferred Governmental Insurance Trust offering tailored property and casualty insurance products, risk management consulting, third-party administration and related services designed for cities, counties, municipalities, schools, special taxing districts and other public entities in the State of Florida.
Wright Risk Management Company, LLC: is a program administrator for the New York Schools Insurance Reciprocal and the New York Municipal Insurance Reciprocal offering tailored property and casualty insurance products, risk management consulting, third-party administration and related services designed for cities, counties, municipalities, schools, special taxing districts and other public entities in the State of New York.
National Flood Program. Operating as Wright Flood, Wright National Flood Insurance Company (“WNFIC”) is an insurance carrier. This business consists of policies written pursuant to the NFIP, the program administered by FEMA and excess flood insurance policies, which are fully reinsured, thereby substantially eliminating WNFIC’s exposure to underwriting risk, given that these policies are backed by either FEMA or a reinsurance carrier with an AM Best Company rating of “A” or better.
Wholesale Brokerage Segment
At December 31, 2017 , our Wholesale Brokerage Segment employed 1,256 full-time equivalent employees. Our Wholesale Brokerage Segment markets and sells excess and surplus commercial insurance products and services to retail insurance agencies (including Brown & Brown retail offices). The Wholesale Brokerage Segment offices represent various U.S. and U.K. surplus lines insurance companies. Additionally, certain offices are also Lloyd’s of London correspondents. The Wholesale Brokerage Segment also represents admitted insurance companies for purposes of affording access to such companies for smaller agencies that otherwise do not have access to large insurance company representation. Excess and surplus insurance products encompass many insurance coverages, including personal lines, homeowners, yachts, jewelry, commercial property and casualty, commercial automobile, garage, restaurant, builder’s risk and inland marine lines. Difficult-to-insure general liability and products liability coverages are a specialty, as is excess workers’ compensation coverage. Wholesale brokers solicit business through mailings and direct contact with retail agency representatives. During 2017 , commissions and fees from our largest Wholesale Brokerage Segment customer represented approximately 0.9% of the Wholesale Brokerage Segment’s total commissions and fees.
Services Segment
At December 31, 2017 , our Services Segment employed 924 full-time equivalent employees and provided a wide range of insurance-related services.
Below are brief descriptions of the businesses within the Services Segment.
The Advocator Group, LLC (“The Advocator Group”) and Social Security Advocates for the Disabled LLC (“SSAD”) assist individuals throughout the United States who are seeking to establish eligibility for coverage under the federal Social Security Disability program and provides health plan selection and enrollment assistance for Medicare beneficiaries. These two businesses work closely with employer sponsored group life, disability and health plan participants to assist disabled employees in receiving the education, advocacy and benefit coordination assistance necessary to achieve the fastest possible benefit approvals. In addition, The Advocator Group also provides second injury fund recovery services to the workers’ compensation insurance market.
American Claims Management (“ACM”) provides third-party administration (“TPA”) services to both the commercial and personal property and casualty insurance markets on a nationwide basis, and provides claims adjusting, administration, subrogation, litigation and data management services to insurance companies, self-insureds, public municipalities, insurance brokers and corporate entities. ACM services also include managed care, claim investigations, field adjusting and audit services. Approximately 72% of ACM’s 2017 net revenues were derived from various Arrowhead programs in our National Programs Segment, with the remainder generated from third parties.
ICA provides comprehensive claims management solutions for both personal and commercial lines of insurance. ICA is a national service provider for daily claims, vendor management, TPA operations and staff augmentation. ICA offers training and educational opportunities to independent adjusters nationwide in ICA’s regional training facilities. Additional claims services offered by ICA include first notice of loss, fast track, field appraisals, quality control and consulting.

9


NuQuest provides a full spectrum of Medicare Secondary Payer (“MSP”) statutory compliance services, from Medicare Set-aside Allocation through Professional Administration to over 250 insurance carriers, third-party administrators, self-insured employers, attorneys, brokers and related claims professionals nationwide. Specialty services include medical projections, life care plans, Medicare Set-aside analysis, allocation and administration
Preferred Governmental Claims Solutions (“PGCS”) provides TPA services for government entities and self-funded or fully-insured workers’ compensation and liability plans and trusts. PGCS’ services include claims administration and a dedicated subrogation recovery department.
Protect Professionals Claims Management (“PPCM”)  provides third-party administration (“TPA”) services to professional liability insurance markets on a nationwide basis. PPCM’s services include claims adjusting, administration, litigation and data management for professional programs for CPAs, dentists, lawyers, and physicians administered by our National Programs Segment.
USIS provides TPA services for insurance entities and self-funded or fully-insured workers’ compensation and liability plans. USIS’s services include claims administration, cost containment consulting, services for secondary disability and subrogation recoveries, and risk management services such as loss control. USIS’s services also include certified and non-certified medical management programs, access to medical networks, case management, and utilization review services certified by URAC, formerly the Utilization Review Accreditation Commission.
In 2017 , our four largest contracts represented approximately 25.0% of fees revenues in our Services Segment.
Employees
At December 31, 2017 , the Company had 8,491 full-time equivalent employees. For the purposes of measuring full-time equivalent employees, those working more than 30 hours per week are counted as a full-time equivalent employee and those working less than 30 hours per week are counted as half of a full-time equivalent employee. We have agreements with our sales employees and certain other employees that include provisions: (1) protecting our confidential information and trade secrets, (2) restricting their ability post-employment to solicit the business of our customers, and (3) preventing the hiring of our employees for a period of time after separation from employment with us. The enforceability of such agreements varies from state to state depending upon applicable law and factual circumstances. The majority of our employment relationships are at-will and terminable by either party at any time; however, the covenants regarding confidential information and non-solicitation of our customers and employees generally extend for a period of at least two years after cessation of employment.
None of our employees are subject to a collective bargaining agreement and we consider our relations with our employees to be good.
Competition
The insurance intermediary business is highly competitive, and numerous firms actively compete with us for customers and insurance markets. Competition in the insurance business is largely based upon innovation, knowledge, terms and conditions of coverage, quality of service and price. A number of firms and banks with substantially greater resources and market presence compete with us.
A number of insurance companies directly sell insurance, primarily to individuals, and do not pay commissions to third-party agents and brokers. In addition, the Internet continues to be a source for direct placement of personal lines insurance business. While it is difficult to quantify the impact on our business from individuals purchasing insurance over the Internet, we believe this risk would generally be isolated to personal lines customers with single-line coverage, which represent a small portion of our overall Retail Segment.
Regulation, Licensing and Agency Contracts
We and/or our designated employees must be licensed to act as agents, brokers, intermediaries or third-party administrators by state regulatory authorities in the locations in which we conduct business. Regulations and licensing laws vary by individual state and international location and are often complex.
The applicable licensing laws and regulations in all states and international jurisdictions are subject to amendment or reinterpretation by regulatory authorities, and such authorities are vested in most cases with relatively broad discretion as to the granting, revocation, suspension and renewal of licenses. The possibility exists that we and/or our employees could be excluded or temporarily suspended from carrying on some or all of our activities in, or could otherwise be subjected to penalties by a particular jurisdiction.
Available Information
We are subject to the reporting requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”), and its rules and regulations. The Exchange Act requires us to file reports, proxy statements and other information with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). We make available free of charge on our website, at www.bbinsurance.com, our annual report on Form 10-K, quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, current reports on Form 8-K, and amendments to those reports filed or furnished pursuant to Section 13(a) or 15(d) of the Exchange Act and the rules promulgated thereunder, as soon as reasonably practicable after electronically filing or furnishing such material

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to the SEC. These documents are posted on our website at www.bbinsurance.com and may be accessed by selecting the “Investor Relations” link and then the “SEC Filings” link.
Copies of these reports, proxy statements and other information can be read and copied at:
SEC Public Reference Room
100 F Street NE
Washington, D.C. 20549
 Information on the operation of the Public Reference Room may be obtained by calling the SEC at 1-800-732-0330. Also, the SEC maintains a website that contains reports, proxy statements and other information regarding issuers that file electronically with the SEC. These materials may be obtained electronically by accessing the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov.
The charters of the Audit, Compensation and Nominating/Governance Committees of our Board of Directors as well as our Corporate Governance Principles, Code of Business Conduct and Ethics and Code of Ethics-CEO and Senior Financial Officers (including any amendments to, or waivers of any provision of any of these charters, principles or codes) are also available on our website or upon request. Requests for copies of any of these documents should be directed in writing to: Corporate Secretary, Brown & Brown, Inc., 220 South Ridgewood Avenue, Daytona Beach, Florida 32114, or by telephone to (386)-252-9601.
ITEM 1A. Risk Factors.
Our business, financial condition, results of operations and cash flows are subject to, and could be materially adversely affected by, various risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, those set forth below, any one of which could cause our actual results to vary materially from recent results or our anticipated future results. We present these risk factors grouped by category, and the risks factors contained in each respective category are presented in order of their relative priority to us.
Risks Related to Our Business
OUR INABILITY TO RETAIN OR HIRE QUALIFIED EMPLOYEES, AS WELL AS THE LOSS OF ANY OF OUR EXECUTIVE OFFICERS, COULD NEGATIVELY IMPACT OUR ABILITY TO RETAIN EXISTING BUSINESS AND GENERATE NEW BUSINESS.
Our success depends on our ability to attract and retain skilled and experienced personnel. There is significant competition from within the insurance industry and from businesses outside the industry for exceptional employees, especially in key positions. If we are not able to successfully attract, retain and motivate our employees, our business, financial results and reputation could be materially and adversely affected.
Losing employees who manage or support substantial customer relationships or possess substantial experience or expertise could adversely affect our ability to secure and complete customer engagements, which would adversely affect our results of operations. Also, if any of our key professionals were to join an existing competitor or form a competing company, some of our customers could choose to use the services of that competitor instead of our services. While our key personnel are prohibited by contract from soliciting our employees and customers for a period of years following separation from employment with us, they are not prohibited from competing with us.
In addition, we could be adversely affected if we fail to adequately plan for the succession of our senior leaders and key executives. While we have succession plans in place and we have employment arrangements with certain key executives, these do not guarantee that the services of these executives will continue to be available to us. Although we operate with a decentralized management system, the loss of our senior managers or other key personnel, or our inability to continue to identify, recruit and retain such personnel, could materially and adversely affect our business, results of operations and financial condition.
OUR GROWTH STRATEGY DEPENDS, IN PART, ON THE ACQUISITION OF OTHER INSURANCE INTERMEDIARIES, WHICH MAY NOT BE AVAILABLE ON ACCEPTABLE TERMS IN THE FUTURE OR WHICH, IF CONSUMMATED, MAY NOT BE ADVANTAGEOUS TO US.
Our growth strategy partially includes the acquisition of other insurance intermediaries. Our ability to successfully identify suitable acquisition candidates, complete acquisitions, integrate acquired businesses into our operations, and expand into new markets requires us to implement and continuously improve our operations and our financial and management information systems. Integrated, acquired businesses may not achieve levels of revenues or profitability comparable to our existing operations, or otherwise perform as expected. In addition, we compete for acquisition and expansion opportunities with firms and banks that have substantially greater resources than we do. Acquisitions also involve a number of special risks, such as: diversion of management’s attention; difficulties in the integration of acquired operations and retention of personnel; increase in expenses and working capital requirements, which could reduce our return on invested capital; entry into unfamiliar markets or lines of business; unanticipated problems or legal liabilities; estimation of the acquisition earn-out payables; and tax and

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accounting issues, some or all of which could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial condition and cash flows. Post-acquisition deterioration of targets could also result in lower or negative earnings contribution and/or goodwill impairment charges.
OUR ABILITY TO CONDUCT BUSINESS WOULD BE NEGATIVELY IMPACTED IN THE EVENT OF AN INTERRUPTION IN INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY AND/OR DATA SECURITY AND/OR OUTSOURCING RELATIONSHIPS.
Our business relies on information systems to provide effective and efficient service to our customers, process claims, and timely and accurately report information to carriers. An interruption of our access to, or an inability to access, our information technology, telecommunications or other systems could significantly impair our ability to perform such functions on a timely basis. If sustained or repeated, such a business interruption, system failure or service denial could result in a deterioration of our ability to write and process new and renewal business, provide customer service, pay claims in a timely manner or perform other necessary business functions.
Computer viruses, hackers and other external hazards could expose our data systems to security breaches. These increased risks, and expanding regulatory requirements regarding data security, could expose us to data loss, monetary and reputational damages and significant increases in compliance costs. While we have taken, and continue to take, actions to protect the security and privacy of our information, entirely eliminating all risk of improper access to private information is not possible.
WE DERIVE A SIGNIFICANT PORTION OF OUR COMMISSION REVENUES FROM A LIMITED NUMBER OF INSURANCE COMPANIES, THE LOSS OF WHICH COULD RESULT IN ADDITIONAL EXPENSE AND LOSS OF MARKET SHARE.
For the year ended December 31, 2017 , no insurance company accounted for more than 5.0% of our total core commissions. For the years ended December 31, 2016 and 2015 , approximately 6.0% and 7.3%, respectively, of our total core commissions was derived from insurance policies underwritten by one insurance company. Should this insurance company seek to terminate its arrangements with us or to otherwise decrease the number of insurance policies underwritten it writes for us, we believe that other insurance companies are available to underwrite the business, and we could likely move our business to one of these other insurance companies, although some additional expense and loss of market share could possibly result.
BECAUSE OUR BUSINESS IS HIGHLY CONCENTRATED IN ARIZONA, CALIFORNIA, FLORIDA, GEORGIA, ILLINOIS, INDIANA, KENTUCKY, MASSACHUSETTS, MICHIGAN, NEW JERSEY, NEW YORK, NORTH CAROLINA, OREGON, PENNSYLVANIA, TEXAS, VIRGINIA AND WASHINGTON, ADVERSE ECONOMIC CONDITIONS, NATURAL DISASTERS, OR REGULATORY CHANGES IN THESE STATES COULD ADVERSELY AFFECT OUR FINANCIAL CONDITION.
A significant portion of our business is concentrated in Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and Washington. For the years ended December 31, 2017 , 2016 and 2015 , we derived $1,677.2 million or 89.1%, $1,568.0 million or 88.8% and $1,458.5 million or 87.8%, of our revenue, respectively, from our operations located in these states. We believe the current regulatory environment for insurance intermediaries in these states is no more restrictive than in other states. The insurance business is primarily a state-regulated industry, and therefore, state legislatures may enact laws that adversely affect the insurance industry. Because our business is concentrated in the states identified above, we face greater exposure to unfavorable changes in regulatory conditions in those states than insurance intermediaries whose operations are more diversified through a greater number of states. In addition, the occurrence of adverse economic conditions, natural or other disasters, or other circumstances specific to or otherwise significantly impacting these states could adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash flows. We are susceptible to losses and interruptions caused by hurricanes (particularly in Florida, where we have 41 offices and our headquarters, as well as in Texas, where we have 10 offices and Hurricane Harvey made landfall in August 2017), earthquakes (including in California, where we have 23 offices), power shortages, telecommunications failures, water shortages, floods, fire, extreme weather conditions, geopolitical events such as terrorist acts and other natural or man-made disasters. Our insurance coverage with respect to natural disasters is limited and is subject to deductibles and coverage limits. Such coverage may not be adequate, or may not continue to be available at commercially reasonable rates and terms.
OUR CORPORATE CULTURE HAS CONTRIBUTED TO OUR SUCCESSS, AND IF WE CANNOT MAINTAIN THIS CULTURE, OR IF WE EXPERIENCE A CHANGE IN MANAGEMENT, MANAGEMENT PHILOSOPHY, OR BUSINESS STRATEGY, OUR BUSINESS MAY BE HARMED.
We believe that a significant contributor to our success has been our corporate culture as a lean, decentralized, highly competitive, profit-oriented sales and service organization.  As we grow, including from the integration of employees and businesses acquired in connection with previous or future acquisitions, we may find it difficult to maintain important aspects of our corporate culture, which could negatively affect our profitability and/or our ability to retain and recruit people of the highest integrity and quality who are essential to our future success.  We may face pressure to change our culture as we grow, particularly if we experience difficulties in attracting competent personnel who are willing to embrace our culture.  In addition, as our organization grows and we are required to implement more complex organizational structures, or if we experience a change in management, management philosophy, or business strategy, we may find it increasingly difficult to maintain the beneficial aspects of our corporate culture, such as decentralization, which could negatively impact our future success.

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IF WE FAIL TO COMPLY WITH THE COVENANTS CONTAINED IN CERTAIN OF OUR AGREEMENTS, OUR LIQUIDITY, RESULTS OF OPERATIONS AND FINANCIAL CONDITION MAY BE ADVERSELY AFFECTED.
The credit agreements that govern our debt contain various covenants and other limitations with which we must comply. At December 31, 2017 , we believe we were in compliance with the financial covenants and other limitations contained in each of these agreements. However, failure to comply with material provisions of our covenants in these agreements or other credit or similar agreements to which we may become a party could result in a default, rendering them unavailable to us and causing a material adverse effect on our liquidity, results of operations and financial condition. In the event of certain defaults, the lenders thereunder would not be required to lend any additional amounts to or purchase any additional notes from us and could elect to declare all borrowings outstanding, together with accrued and unpaid interest and fees, to be due and payable. If the indebtedness under these agreements or our other indebtedness, were to be accelerated, there can be no assurance that our assets would be sufficient to repay such indebtedness in full.
CERTAIN OF OUR AGREEMENTS CONTAIN VARIOUS COVENANTS THAT LIMIT THE DISCRETION OF OUR MANAGEMENT IN OPERATING OUR BUSINESS AND COULD PREVENT US FROM ENGAGING IN CERTAIN POTENTIALLY BENEFICIAL ACTIVITIES.
The restrictive covenants in our debt agreements may impact how we operate our business and prevent us from engaging in certain potentially beneficial activities. In particular, among other covenants, our debt agreements require us to maintain a minimum ratio of Consolidated EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization), adjusted for certain transaction-related items (“Consolidated EBITDA”), to consolidated interest expense and a maximum ratio of consolidated net indebtedness to Consolidated EBITDA. Our compliance with these covenants could limit management’s discretion in operating our business and could prevent us from engaging in certain potentially beneficial activities.
THERE ARE INHERENT UNCERTAINTIES INVOLVED IN ESTIMATES, JUDGMENTS AND ASSUMPTIONS USED IN THE PREPARATION OF FINANCIAL STATEMENTS IN ACCORDANCE WITH U.S. GAAP. ANY CHANGES IN ESTIMATES, JUDGMENTS AND ASSUMPTIONS COULD HAVE A MATERIAL ADVERSE EFFECT ON OUR BUSINESS, FINANCIAL POSITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS.
The annual Consolidated Financial Statements and Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements included in the periodic reports we file with the SEC are prepared in accordance with U.S. GAAP. The preparation of financial statements in accordance with U.S. GAAP involves making estimates, judgments and assumptions that affect reported amounts of assets (including intangible assets), liabilities and related reserves, revenues, expenses and income. Estimates, judgments and assumptions are inherently subject to change in the future, and any such changes could result in corresponding changes to the amounts of assets, liabilities, revenues, expenses and income, and could have a material adverse effect on our financial position, results of operations and cash flows.
RAPID TECHNOLOGICAL CHANGE MAY REQUIRE ADDITIONAL RESOURCES AND TIME TO ADEQUATELY RESPOND TO DYNAMICS, WHICH MAY ADVERSELY AFFECT OUR BUSINESS AND OPERATING RESULTS.
Frequent technological changes, new products and services and evolving industry standards are influencing the insurance business. The Internet, for example, is increasingly used to securely transmit benefits and related information to customers and to facilitate business-to-business information exchange and transactions.
We are continuously taking steps to upgrade and expand our information systems capabilities. Maintaining, protecting and enhancing these capabilities to keep pace with evolving industry and regulatory standards, and changing customer preferences, requires an ongoing commitment of significant resources. If the information we rely upon to run our businesses was found to be inaccurate or unreliable or if we fail to effectively maintain our information systems and data integrity, we could experience operational disruptions, regulatory or other legal problems, increases in operating expenses, loss of existing customers, difficulty in attracting new customers, or suffer other adverse consequences.
We are currently underway with a multi-year plan to upgrade many of our technology platforms and anticipate investing a total of $30 million to $40 million, which will have an impact on our operating margins and cash flow during this period. We have not determined, however, if additional resources and time for development and implementation may be required, which if required, may result in short-term, unexpected interruptions or impacts to our business, or may result in a competitive disadvantage in price and/or efficiency, as we develop or implement new technologies.
Our technological development projects may not deliver the benefits we expect once they are completed, or may be replaced or become obsolete more quickly than expected, which could result in the accelerated recognition of expenses. If we do not effectively and efficiently manage and upgrade our technology portfolio regularly, or if the costs of doing so are higher than we expect, our ability to provide competitive services to new and existing customers in a cost-effective manner and our ability to implement our strategic initiatives could be adversely impacted.

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IMPROPER DISCLOSURE OF CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION COULD NEGATIVELY IMPACT OUR BUSINESS.
We are responsible for maintaining the security and privacy of our customers’ confidential and proprietary information and the personal data of their employees. We have put in place policies, procedures and technological safeguards designed to protect the security and privacy of this information, however, we cannot guarantee that this information will not be improperly disclosed or accessed. Disclosure of this information could harm our reputation and subject us to liability under our contracts and laws that protect personal data, resulting in increased costs or loss of revenues.
Further, privacy laws and regulations are continuously changing and often are inconsistent among the states in which we operate. Our failure to adhere to or successfully implement procedures to respond to these requirements could result in legal liability or impairment to our reputation.
DUE TO INHERENT LIMITATIONS, THERE CAN BE NO ASSURANCE THAT OUR SYSTEM OF DISCLOSURE AND INTERNAL CONTROLS AND PROCEDURES WILL BE SUCCESSFUL IN PREVENTING ALL ERRORS OR FRAUD, OR IN INFORMING MANAGEMENT OF ALL MATERIAL INFORMATION IN A TIMELY MANNER.
Our management, including our Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer, does not expect that our disclosure controls and internal controls and procedures will prevent all error and all fraud. A control system, no matter how well conceived, operated and tested, can provide only reasonable, not absolute, assurance that the objectives of the control system are met. Further, the design of a control system reflects that there are resource constraints, and the benefits of controls must be considered relative to their costs. Because of the inherent limitations in all control systems, no evaluation of controls can provide absolute assurance that all control issues and instances of fraud, if any, within the Company have been detected. These inherent limitations include the realities that judgments in decision-making can be faulty and that breakdowns can occur simply because of error or mistake. Additionally, controls can be circumvented by the individual acts of some persons, by collusion of two or more people, or by management override of a control.
The design of any system of controls also is based in part upon certain assumptions about the likelihood of future events, and there can be no assurance that any design will succeed in achieving its stated goals under all potential future conditions. Over time, a control may become inadequate because of changes in conditions, or the degree of compliance with the policies or procedures may deteriorate. Because of the inherent limitations in a cost-effective control system, misstatements due to error or fraud may occur and may not be detected.
OUR BUSINESS, RESULTS OF OPERATIONS, FINANCIAL CONDITION AND LIQUIDITY MAY BE MATERIALLY ADVERSELY AFFECTED BY CERTAIN ACTUAL AND POTENTIAL CLAIMS, REGULATORY ACTIONS AND PROCEEDINGS.
We are subject to various actual and potential claims, regulatory actions and other proceedings including those relating to alleged errors and omissions in connection with the placement or servicing of insurance and/or the provision of services in the ordinary course of business, of which we cannot, and likely will not be able to, predict the outcome with certainty. Because we often assist customers with matters involving substantial amounts of money, including the placement of insurance and the handling of related claims that customers may assert, errors and omissions claims against us may arise alleging potential liability for all or part of the amounts in question. Also, the failure of an insurer with whom we place business could result in errors and omissions claims against us by our customers, which could adversely affect our results of operations and financial condition. Claimants may seek large damage awards, and these claims may involve potentially significant legal costs, including punitive damages. Such claims, lawsuits and other proceedings could, for example, include claims for damages based upon allegations that our employees or sub-agents failed to procure coverage, report claims on behalf of customers, provide insurance companies with complete and accurate information relating to the risks being insured or appropriately apply funds that we hold for our customers on a fiduciary basis. In addition, given the long-tail nature of professional liability claims, errors and omissions matters can relate to matters dating back many years. Where appropriate, we have established provisions against these potential matters that we believe to be adequate in the light of current information and legal advice, and we adjust such provisions from time to time according to developments.
While most of the errors and omissions claims made against us (subject to our self-insured deductibles) have been covered by our professional indemnity insurance, our business, results of operations, financial condition and liquidity may be adversely affected if, in the future, our insurance coverage proves to be inadequate or unavailable, or if there is an increase in liabilities for which we self-insure. Our ability to obtain professional indemnity insurance in the amounts and with the deductibles we desire in the future may be adversely impacted by general developments in the market for such insurance or our own claims experience. In addition, regardless of monetary costs, these matters could have a material adverse effect on our reputation and cause harm to our carrier, customer or employee relationships, or divert personnel and management resources.
OUR BUSINESS, AND THEREFORE OUR RESULTS OF OPERATIONS AND FINANCIAL CONDITION, MAY BE ADVERSELY AFFECTED BY FURTHER CHANGES IN THE U.S.-BASED CREDIT MARKETS.
Although we are not currently experiencing any limitation of access to our revolving credit facility (which matures in 2022) and are not aware of any issues impacting the ability or willingness of our lenders under such facility to honor their commitments to extend us credit, the failure of a lender could adversely affect our ability to borrow on that facility, which over time could negatively impact our ability to

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consummate significant acquisitions or make other significant capital expenditures. Tightening conditions in the credit markets in future years could adversely affect the availability and terms of future borrowings or renewals or refinancing.
We also have a significant amount of trade accounts receivable from some insurance companies with which we place insurance. If those insurance companies were to experience liquidity problems or other financial difficulties, we could encounter delays or defaults in payments owed to us, which could have a significant adverse impact on our financial condition and results of operations.
CERTAIN OF OUR EXISTING SHAREHOLDERS HAVE SIGNIFICANT CONTROL OF THE COMPANY.
At December 31, 2017 , our executive officers, directors and certain of their family members collectively beneficially owned approximately 17.1% of our outstanding common stock, of which J. Hyatt Brown, our Chairman, and his son, J. Powell Brown, our President and Chief Executive Officer, beneficially owned approximately 16.3%. As a result, our executive officers, directors and certain of their family members have significant influence over (1) the election of our Board of Directors, (2) the approval or disapproval of any other matters requiring shareholder approval and (3) our affairs and policies.
WE HAVE OPERATIONS INTERNATIONALLY, WHICH MAY RESULT IN A NUMBER OF ADDITIONAL RISKS AND REQUIRE MORE MANAGEMENT TIME AND EXPENSE THAN OUR DOMESTIC OPERATIONS TO ACHIEVE OR MAINTAIN PROFITABILITY.
We have operations in the United Kingdom, Bermuda, Canada and the Cayman Islands. In the future, we intend to continue to consider additional international expansion opportunities. Our international operations may be subject to a number of risks, including:
Difficulties in staffing and managing foreign operations;
Less flexible employee relationships, which may make it difficult and expensive to terminate employees and which limits our ability to prohibit employees from competing with us after their employment ceases;
Political and economic instability (including acts of terrorism and outbreaks of war);
Coordinating our communications and logistics across geographic distances and multiple time zones;
Unexpected changes in regulatory requirements and laws;
Adverse trade policies, and adverse changes to any of the policies of either the U.S. or any of the foreign jurisdictions in which we operate;
Adverse changes in tax rates;
Variations in foreign currency exchange rates;
Legal or political constraints on our ability to maintain or increase prices;
Governmental restrictions on the transfer of funds to us from our operations outside the United States; and
Burdens of complying with a wide variety of labor practices and foreign laws, including those relating to export and import duties, environmental policies and privacy issues.
Risks Related to Our Industry
OUR CURRENT MARKET SHARE MAY DECREASE AS A RESULT OF DISINTERMEDIATION WITHIN THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY, INCLUDING INCREASED COMPETITION FROM INSURANCE COMPANIES, TECHNOLOGY COMPANIES AND THE FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY, AS WELL AS THE SHIFT AWAY FROM TRADITIONAL INSURANCE MARKETS.
The insurance intermediary business is highly competitive and we actively compete with numerous firms for customers and insurance companies, many of which have relationships with insurance companies or have a significant presence in niche insurance markets that may give them an advantage over us. Other competitive concerns may include the quality of our products and services, our pricing and the ability of some of our customers to self-insure and the entrance of technology companies into the insurance intermediary business. A number of insurance companies are engaged in the direct sale of insurance, primarily to individuals, and do not pay commissions to agents and brokers. In addition, and to the extent that banks, securities firms and insurance companies affiliate, the financial services industry may experience further consolidation, and we therefore may experience increased competition from insurance companies and the financial services industry, as a growing number of larger financial institutions increasingly, and aggressively, offer a wider variety of financial services, including insurance intermediary services.
In addition, there has been an increase in alternative insurance markets, such as self-insurance, captives, risk retention groups and non-insurance capital markets. While we compete in these segments on a fee-for-service basis, we cannot be certain that such alternative markets will provide the same level of insurance coverage or profitability as traditional insurance markets.

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CURRENT U.S. ECONOMIC CONDITIONS MAY ADVERSELY AFFECT OUR BUSINESS.
If economic conditions were to worsen, a number of negative effects on our business could result, including declines in values of insurable exposure units, declines in insurance premium rates, and the financial insolvency of insurance companies, or reduced ability to pay, of certain of our customers. Also, if general economic conditions are poor, some of our customers may cease operations completely or be acquired by other companies, which could have an adverse effect on our results of operations and financial condition. If these customers are affected by poor economic conditions but yet remain in existence, they may face liquidity problems or other financial difficulties which could result in delays or defaults in payments owed to us, which could have a significant adverse impact on our consolidated financial condition and results of operations. Any of these effects could decrease our net revenues and profitability.
OUR BUSINESS, AND THEREFORE OUR RESULTS OF OPERATIONS AND FINANCIAL CONDITION, MAY BE ADVERSELY AFFECTED BY CONDITIONS THAT RESULT IN REDUCED INSURER CAPACITY.
Our results of operations depend on the continued capacity of insurance carriers to underwrite risk and provide coverage, which depends in turn on those insurance companies’ ability to procure reinsurance. Capacity could also be reduced by insurance companies failing or withdrawing from writing certain coverages that we offer our customers. We have no control over these matters. To the extent that reinsurance becomes less widely available, we may not be able to procure the amount or types of coverage that our customers desire and the coverage we are able to procure for our customers may be more expensive or limited.
QUARTERLY AND ANNUAL VARIATIONS IN OUR COMMISSIONS THAT RESULT FROM THE TIMING OF POLICY RENEWALS AND THE NET EFFECT OF NEW AND LOST BUSINESS PRODUCTION MAY HAVE UNEXPECTED EFFECTS ON OUR RESULTS OF OPERATIONS.
Our commission income (including profit-sharing contingent commissions and override commissions) can vary quarterly or annually due to the timing of policy renewals and the net effect of new and lost business production. We do not control the factors that cause these variations. Specifically, customers’ demand for insurance products can influence the timing of renewals, new business and lost business (which includes policies that are not renewed), and cancellations. In addition, as discussed, we rely on insurance companies for the payment of certain commissions. Because these payments are processed internally by these insurance companies, we may not receive a payment that is otherwise expected from a particular insurance company in a particular quarter or year until after the end of that period, which can adversely affect our ability to forecast these revenues and therefore budget for significant future expenditures. Quarterly and annual fluctuations in revenues based upon increases and decreases associated with the timing of policy renewals may adversely affect our financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.
Profit-sharing contingent commissions are special revenue-sharing commissions paid by insurance companies based upon the profitability, volume and/or growth of the business placed with such companies during the prior year. These commissions generally have been in the range of 3.0% to 4.0% of our previous year’s total core commissions and fees over the last three years. Due to, among other things, potentially poor macroeconomic conditions, the inherent uncertainty of loss in our industry and changes in underwriting criteria due in part to the high loss ratios experienced by insurance companies, we cannot predict the payment of these profit-sharing contingent commissions. Further, we have no control over the ability of insurance companies to estimate loss reserves, which affects our ability to make profit-sharing calculations. Override commissions are paid by insurance companies based upon the volume of business that we place with them and are generally paid over the course of the year. Because profit-sharing contingent commissions and override commissions materially affect our revenues, any decrease in their payment to us could adversely affect our results of operations, profitability and our financial condition.
WE COULD INCUR SUBSTANTIAL LOSSES FROM OUR CASH AND INVESTMENT ACCOUNTS IF ONE OF THE FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS THAT WE USE FAILS OR IS TAKEN OVER BY THE U.S. FEDERAL DEPOSIT INSURANCE CORPORATION (“FDIC”).
We maintain cash and investment balances, including restricted cash held in premium trust accounts, at various depository institutions in amounts that are significantly in excess of the limits insured by the FDIC. If one or more of the depository institutions with which we maintain significant cash balances were to fail or be taken over by the FDIC, our ability to access these funds might be temporarily or permanently limited, and we could face material liquidity problems and potential material financial losses.
OUR BUSINESS PRACTICES AND COMPENSATION ARRANGEMENTS ARE SUBJECT TO UNCERTAINTY DUE TO POTENTIAL CHANGES IN REGULATIONS.
The business practices and compensation arrangements of the insurance intermediary industry, including our practices and arrangements, are subject to uncertainty due to investigations by various governmental authorities. Certain of our offices are parties to profit-sharing contingent commission agreements with certain insurance companies, including agreements providing for potential payment of revenue-sharing commissions by insurance companies based primarily on the overall profitability of the aggregate business written with those insurance companies and/or additional factors such as retention ratios and the overall volume of business that an office or offices place with those insurance companies. Additionally, to a lesser extent, some of our offices are parties to override commission agreements with certain insurance

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companies, which provide for commission rates in excess of standard commission rates to be applied to specific lines of business, such as group health business, and which are based primarily on the overall volume of business that such office or offices placed with those insurance companies. The legislatures of various states may adopt new laws addressing contingent commission arrangements, including laws prohibiting such arrangements, and addressing disclosure of such arrangements to insureds. Various state departments of insurance may also adopt new regulations addressing these matters which could adversely affect our results of operations.
WE COMPETE IN A HIGHLY-REGULATED INDUSTRY, WHICH MAY RESULT IN INCREASED EXPENSES OR RESTRICTIONS ON OUR OPERATIONS.
We conduct business in each of the fifty states of the United States of America and are subject to comprehensive regulation and supervision by government agencies in each of those states. The primary purpose of such regulation and supervision is to provide safeguards for policyholders rather than to protect the interests of our shareholders, and it is difficult to anticipate how changes in such regulation would be implemented and enforced. As a result, such regulation and supervision could reduce our profitability or growth by increasing compliance costs, restricting the products or services we may sell, the markets we may enter, the methods by which we may sell our products and services, or the prices we may charge for our services and the form of compensation we may accept from our customers, carriers and third parties. The laws of the various state jurisdictions establish supervisory agencies with broad administrative powers with respect to, among other things, licensing of entities to transact business, licensing of agents, admittance of assets, regulating premium rates, approving policy forms, regulating unfair trade and claims practices, establishing reserve requirements and solvency standards, requiring participation in guarantee funds and shared market mechanisms, and restricting payment of dividends. Also, in response to perceived excessive cost or inadequacy of available insurance, states have from time to time created state insurance funds and assigned risk pools, which compete directly, on a subsidized basis, with private insurance providers. We act as agents and brokers for such state insurance funds and assigned risk pools in California and New York as well as certain other states. These state funds and pools could choose to reduce the sales or brokerage commissions we receive. Any such reductions, in a state in which we have substantial operations could affect the profitability of our operations in such state, or cause us to change our marketing focus. Further, state insurance regulators and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners continually re-examine existing laws and regulations, and such re-examination may result in the enactment of insurance-related laws and regulations, or the issuance of interpretations thereof, that adversely affect our business. Certain federal financial services modernization legislation could lead to additional federal regulation of the insurance industry in the coming years, which could result in increased expenses or restrictions on our operations. Other legislative developments that could adversely affect us include: changes in our business compensation model as a result of regulatory developments (for example, the Affordable Care Act); and federal and state governments establishing programs to provide health insurance or, in certain cases, property insurance in catastrophe-prone areas or other alternative market types of coverage, that compete with, or completely replace, insurance products offered by insurance carriers. Also, as climate change issues become more prevalent, the U.S. and foreign governments are beginning to respond to these issues. This increasing governmental focus on climate change may result in new environmental regulations that may negatively affect us and our customers. This could cause us to incur additional direct costs in complying with any new environmental regulations, as well as increased indirect costs resulting from our customers incurring additional compliance costs that get passed on to us. These costs may adversely impact our results of operations and financial condition.
Although we believe that we are in compliance in all material respects with applicable local, state and federal laws, rules and regulations, there can be no assurance that more restrictive laws, rules, regulations or interpretations thereof, will not be adopted in the future that could make compliance more difficult or expensive.
WE ARE EXPOSED TO INTANGIBLE ASSET RISK; SPECIFICALLY, OUR GOODWILL MAY BECOME IMPAIRED IN THE FUTURE.
As of the date of the filing of our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the 2017 fiscal year, we have $2,716.1 million of goodwill recorded on our Consolidated Balance Sheet. We perform a goodwill impairment test on an annual basis and whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying value of our goodwill may not be recoverable from estimated future cash flows. We completed our most recent evaluation of impairment for goodwill as of November 30, 2017 and determined that the fair value of goodwill exceeded the carrying value of such assets. A significant and sustained decline in our stock price and market capitalization, a significant decline in our expected future cash flows, a significant adverse change in the business climate or slower growth rates could result in the need to perform an additional impairment analysis prior to the next annual goodwill impairment test. If we were to conclude that a future write-down of our goodwill is necessary, we would then record the appropriate charge, which could result in material charges that are adverse to our operating results and financial position. See Note 1-“Summary of Significant Accounting Policies” and Note 3-“Goodwill” to the Consolidated Financial Statements and “Management’s Report on Internal Control Over Financial Reporting.”
Additionally, the carrying value of amortizable intangible assets attributable to each business or asset group comprising the Company is periodically reviewed by management to determine if there are events or changes in circumstances that would indicate that its carrying amount may not be recoverable. Accordingly, if there are any such circumstances that occur during the year, we assess the carrying value of our amortizable intangible assets by considering the estimated future undiscounted cash flows generated by the corresponding business or asset group. Any impairment identified through this assessment may require that the carrying value of related amortizable intangible assets be adjusted; however, no impairments have been recorded for the years ended December 31, 2017 , 2016 and 2015 .

17


PROPOSED TORT REFORM LEGISLATION, IF ENACTED, COULD DECREASE DEMAND FOR LIABILITY INSURANCE, THEREBY REDUCING OUR COMMISSION REVENUES.
Legislation concerning tort reform has been considered, from time to time, in the United States Congress and in several state legislatures. Among the provisions considered in such legislation have been limitations on damage awards, including punitive damages, and various restrictions applicable to class action lawsuits. Enactment of these or similar provisions by Congress, or by states in which we sell insurance, could reduce the demand for liability insurance policies or lead to a decrease in policy limits of such policies sold, thereby reducing our commission revenues.
Risks Related to Investing in our Securities
OUR CREDIT RATINGS ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE.
Our credit ratings are an assessment by rating agencies of our ability to pay our debts when due. Consequently, real or anticipated changes in our credit ratings will generally affect the market value of our securities. Agency ratings are not a recommendation to buy, sell or hold any security, and may be revised or withdrawn at any time by the issuing agency. Each agency’s rating should be evaluated independently of any other agency’s rating.
WE MAY EXPERIENCE VOLATILITY IN OUR STOCK PRICE THAT COULD AFFECT YOUR INVESTMENT.
The market price of our common stock may be subject to significant fluctuations in response to various factors, including: quarterly fluctuations in our operating results; changes in securities analysts’ estimates of our future earnings; changes in securities analysts’ predictions regarding the short-term and long-term future of our industry; changes to the tax code; and our loss of significant customers or significant business developments relating to us or our competitors. Our common stock’s market price also may be affected by our ability to meet stock analysts’ earnings and other expectations. Any failure to meet such expectations, even if minor, could cause the market price of our common stock to decline. In addition, stock markets have generally experienced a high level of price and volume volatility, and the market prices of equity securities of many listed companies have experienced wide price fluctuations not necessarily related to the operating performance of such companies. These broad market fluctuations may adversely affect our common stock’s market price. In the past, securities class action lawsuits frequently have been instituted against companies following periods of volatility in the market price of such companies’ securities. If any such litigation is initiated against us, it could result in substantial costs and a diversion of management’s attention and resources, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations, financial condition and cash flows.
ITEM 1B. Unresolved Staff Comments.
None.
ITEM 2. Properties.
We lease our executive offices, which are located at 220 South Ridgewood Avenue, Daytona Beach, Florida 32114. We lease offices at each of our 242 locations. We own an airplane hangar in Daytona Beach, Florida, which sits upon land leased from Volusia County, Florida. There are no outstanding mortgages on this owned property. Our operating leases expire on various dates. These leases generally contain renewal options and rent escalation clauses based upon increases in the lessors’ operating expenses and other charges. We expect that most leases will be renewed or replaced upon expiration. We believe that our facilities are suitable and adequate for present purposes, and that the productive capacity in such facilities is substantially being utilized. From time to time, we may have unused space and seek to sublet such space to third parties, depending on the demand for office space in the locations involved. In the future, we may need to purchase, build or lease additional facilities to meet the requirements projected in our long-term business plan. See Note 13 to the Consolidated Financial Statements for additional information on our lease commitments.
ITEM 3. Legal Proceedings.
We are subject to numerous litigation claims that arise in the ordinary course of business. We do not believe any of these are, or are likely to become, material to our business.
ITEM 4. Mine Safety Disclosures.
Not applicable.

18


PART II
ITEM 5. Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities.
Our common stock is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (“NYSE”) under the symbol “BRO.” The table below sets forth, for the quarterly periods indicated, the intra-day high and low sales prices for our common stock as reported on the NYSE Composite Tape, and the cash dividends declared on our common stock.
 
High
 
Low
 
Cash
Dividends
Per
Common
Share
2016
 
 
 
 
 
First Quarter
$35.91
 
$28.41
 
$0.12
Second Quarter
$37.49
 
$34.23
 
$0.12
Third Quarter
$38.11
 
$35.81
 
$0.12
Fourth Quarter
$45.62
 
$36.05
 
$0.14
2017
 
 
 
 
 
First Quarter
$45.77
 
$41.68
 
$0.14
Second Quarter
$44.57
 
$41.10
 
$0.14
Third Quarter
$48.97
 
$42.30
 
$0.14
Fourth Quarter
$52.42
 
$48.07
 
$0.15
On February 23, 2018 , there were 137,800,585 shares of our common stock outstanding, held by approximately 1,245 shareholders of record.
We intend to continue to pay quarterly dividends, subject to capital availability and determination by our Board of Directors that cash dividends continue to be in the best interests of our shareholders. Our dividend policy may be affected by, among other items, our views on potential future capital requirements, including those relating to the creation and expansion of sales distribution channels and investments and acquisitions, legal risks, stock repurchase programs and challenges to our business model.
  Equity Compensation Plan Information
The following table sets forth information as of December 31, 2017 , with respect to compensation plans under which the Company’s equity securities are authorized for issuance:
 
 
A
 
B
 
C
 
Plan Category
Number of securities
to be issued upon
exercise of
outstanding options,
warrants
and rights (1)
 
Weighted-average
exercise price of
outstanding
options,
warrants and
rights (2)
 
Number of securities
remaining available
for future issuance
under equity
compensation plans
(excluding securities
reflected
in column (A)) (3)
 
Equity compensation plans approved by shareholders:
 

 
 

 
 

 
Brown & Brown, Inc. 2000 Incentive Stock Option Plan
N/A

 
N/A

 

 
Brown & Brown, Inc. 2010 Stock Incentive Plan
N/A

 
N/A

 
4,197,920

(4)  
Brown & Brown, Inc. 1990 Employee Stock Purchase Plan
N/A

 
N/A

 
4,151,251

 
Brown & Brown, Inc. Performance Stock Plan
N/A

 
N/A

 

 
Total
N/A

 
N/A

 
8,349,171

 
Equity compensation plans not approved by shareholders

 

 

 

19


(1)
In addition to the number of securities listed in this column, 3,252,040 shares are issuable upon the vesting of restricted stock granted under the Brown & Brown, Inc. Performance Stock Plan and the Brown & Brown, Inc. 2010 Stock Incentive Plan, which represents the maximum number of shares that can vest based upon the achievement of certain performance criteria.
(2)
The weighted-average exercise price excludes outstanding restricted stock as there is no exercise price associated with these equity awards.
(3)
All of the shares available for future issuance under the Brown & Brown, Inc. 2000 Incentive Stock Option Plan, the Brown & Brown, Inc. Performance Stock Plan, and the Brown & Brown, Inc. 2010 Stock Incentive Plan may be issued in connection with options, warrants, rights, restricted stock, or other stock-based awards.
(4)
The payout for 634,091 shares of our outstanding performance-based restricted stock grants may be increased up to 200% of the target or decreased to zero, subject to the level of performance attained. The amount reflected in the table is calculated assuming the maximum payout for all restricted stock grants.
Sales of Unregistered Securities
We did not sell any unregistered securities during 2017 .
Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
On July 18, 2014, the Company’s Board of Directors authorized the repurchase of up to $200.0 million of its shares of common stock, and on July 20, 2015, the Company’s Board of Directors authorized the repurchase of up to an additional $400.0 million of the Company’s outstanding common stock. Under the authorization from the Company’s Board of Directors, shares may be purchased from time to time, at the Company’s discretion and subject to the availability of stock, market conditions, the trading price of the stock, alternative uses for capital, the Company’s financial performance and other potential factors. These purchases may be carried out through open market purchases, block trades, accelerated share repurchase plans of up to $100.0 million each (unless otherwise approved by the Board of Directors), negotiated private transactions or pursuant to any trading plan that may be adopted in accordance with Rule 10b5-1 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
Between May 18, 2017 and July 14, 2017, the Company made share repurchases in the open market in total of 348,460 shares at a total cost of $14.9 million .
On August 14, 2017, the Company entered into accelerated share repurchase agreement ("ASR") with an investment bank to purchase an aggregate $50.0 million of the Company's common stock. As part of the ASR, the company received an initial delivery of 967,888 shares of the Company’s common stock with a fair market value of approximately $42.5 million . Upon maturity of the program, the Company received 108,288 shares, relieving the remaining balance of $7.5 million at settlement on October 16, 2017 for a total delivery of 1,076,176 shares of the Company's common stock.
On November 14, 2017, the Company entered into an ASR with an investment bank to purchase an aggregate $75.0 million of the Company's common stock. As part of the ASR, the company received an initial delivery of 1,290,486 shares of the Company's common stock with a fair market value of approximately $63.8 million . Upon maturity of the program, the Company received 168,227 shares, relieving the remaining balance of $11.2 million at settlement on February 9, 2018 for a total delivery of 1,458,713 shares of the Company's common stock.
During 2014, the Company repurchased 2,384,760 shares at an average price per share of $31.46 for a total cost of $75.0 million under the original share repurchase authorization from the Board of Directors on July 18, 2014. During 2015, the Company repurchased 5,408,819 shares at an average price per share of $32.35 for a total cost of $175.0 million under the current share repurchase authorization, while exhausting the previous authorization of $200.0 million from the Board of Directors in 2014. During 2016, the Company repurchased 209,618 shares at an average price per share of $36.53 for a total cost of $7.7 million under the current share repurchase authorization. At December 31, 2017, the remaining amount authorized by our Board of Directors for share repurchases was $238.7 million . Under the authorized repurchase programs, the Company has repurchased a total of approximately 10.7 million shares for an aggregate cost of approximately $386.3 million between 2014 and 2017.

20


The following table presents information with respect to our purchases of our common stock during the three months ended December 31, 2017 .
 
Period
 
Total Number of
Shares
Purchased (1)
 
Average
Price Paid
per Share
 
Total
Number of
Shares
Purchased
as Part of
Publicly
Announced
Plans or
Programs
 
Approximate
Dollar Value of
Shares that May
Yet Be
Purchased Under
the Plans or
Programs
October 1, 2017 to October 31, 2017
 
1,799

 
$
49.38

 

 
$
302,453,029

November 1, 2017 to November 30, 2017
 
1,295,819

 
49.40

 
1,290,486

 
238,703,029

December 1, 2017 to December 31, 2017
 
1,232

 
51.50

 

 
238,703,029

Total
 
1,298,850

 
$
49.40

 
1,290,486

 
$
238,703,029

(1) With the exception of 1,290,486 shares purchased in an ASR transaction, all other shares reported above are attributable to shares withheld for employees’ payroll withholding taxes pertaining to the vesting of restricted shares awarded under our Performance Stock Plan and Incentive Stock Option Plan.
Performance Graph
The following graph is a comparison of five-year cumulative total shareholder returns for our common stock as compared with the cumulative total shareholder return for the NYSE Composite Index, and a group of peer insurance broker and agency companies (Aon plc, Arthur J. Gallagher & Co, Marsh & McLennan Companies, and Willis Towers Watson Public Limited Company). The returns of each company have been weighted according to such companies’ respective stock market capitalizations as of December 31, 2012 for the purposes of arriving at a peer group average. The total return calculations are based upon an assumed $100 investment on December 31, 2012 , with all dividends reinvested.
 
12/12
 
12/13
 
12/14
 
12/15
 
12/16
 
12/17
Brown & Brown, Inc.
100.00

 
124.74

 
132.41

 
130.98

 
185.09

 
214.61

NYSE Composite
100.00

 
126.06

 
134.62

 
129.40

 
144.72

 
171.65

Peer Group
100.00

 
142.91

 
157.73

 
156.96

 
185.44

 
228.52

BRO10KSTOCKPRICE212018V1.JPG

21


ITEM 6. Selected Financial Data.
The following selected Consolidated Financial Data for each of the five fiscal years in the period ended December 31, have been derived from our Consolidated Financial Statements. Such data should be read in conjunction with Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations in Item 7 of Part II of this Annual Report and with our Consolidated Financial Statements and related Notes thereto in Item 8 of Part II of this Annual Report.
(in thousands, except per share data, number of employees and percentages
 
Year Ended December 31
 
2017
 
2016
 
2015
 
2014
 
2013
REVENUES
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Commissions and fees
 
$
1,857,270

 
$
1,762,787

 
$
1,656,951

 
$
1,567,460

 
$
1,355,503

Investment income
 
1,626

 
1,456

 
1,004

 
747

 
638

Other income, net
 
22,451

 
2,386

 
2,554

 
7,589

 
7,138

Total revenues
 
1,881,347

 
1,766,629

 
1,660,509

 
1,575,796

 
1,363,279

EXPENSES
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Employee compensation and benefits
 
994,652

 
925,217

 
856,952

 
811,112

 
705,603

Other operating expenses
 
283,470

 
262,872

 
251,055

 
235,328

 
195,677

(Gain)/loss on disposal
 
(2,157
)
 
(1,291
)
 
(619
)
 
47,425

 

Amortization
 
85,446

 
86,663

 
87,421

 
82,941

 
67,932

Depreciation
 
22,698

 
21,003

 
20,890

 
20,895

 
17,485

Interest
 
38,316

 
39,481

 
39,248

 
28,408

 
16,440

Change in estimated acquisition earn-out payables
 
9,200

 
9,185

 
3,003

 
9,938

 
2,533

Total expenses
 
1,431,625

 
1,343,130

 
1,257,950

 
1,236,047

 
1,005,670

Income before income taxes
 
449,722

 
423,499

 
402,559

 
339,749

 
357,609

Income taxes
 
50,092

 
166,008

 
159,241

 
132,853

 
140,497

Net income
 
$
399,630

 
$
257,491

 
$
243,318

 
$
206,896

 
$
217,112

EARNINGS PER SHARE INFORMATION
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Net income per share - diluted
 
$
2.81

 
$
1.82

 
$
1.70

 
$
1.41

 
$
1.48

Weighted-average number of shares outstanding - diluted
 
138,793

 
137,804

 
140,112

 
142,891

 
142,624

Dividends declared per share
 
$
0.56

 
$
0.50

 
$
0.45

 
$
0.41

 
$
0.37

YEAR-END FINANCIAL POSITION
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Total assets (1)
 
$
5,747,550

 
$
5,262,734

 
$
4,979,844

 
$
4,931,027

 
$
3,620,232

Long-term debt (2)
 
$
856,141

 
$
1,018,372

 
$
1,071,618

 
$
1,142,948

 
$
379,171

Total shareholders’ equity
 
$
2,582,699

 
$
2,360,211

 
$
2,149,776

 
$
2,113,745

 
$
2,007,141

Total shares outstanding at year end
 
138,105

 
140,104

 
138,985

 
143,486

 
145,419

OTHER INFORMATION
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Number of full-time equivalent employees at year end
 
8,491

 
8,297

 
7,807

 
7,591

 
6,992

Total revenues per average number of employees (3)
 
$
224,130

 
$
219,403

 
$
215,679

 
$
216,114

 
$
203,020

Stock price at year end
 
$
51.46

 
$
44.86

 
$
32.10

 
$
32.91

 
$
31.39

Stock price earnings multiple at year-end (4)
 
18.3

 
24.6

 
18.9

 
23.3

 
21.2

Return on beginning shareholders’ equity (5)
 
17
%
 
12
%
 
12
%
 
10
%
 
12
%
(1)
Years 2016 to 2013 have been restated to reflect the adoption of ASU No. 2015-17, “Income Taxes (Topic 740) - Balance Sheet Classification of Deferred Taxes” (“ASU 2015-17”).
(2)
Please refer to Part I, Item 7 “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and Note 8 “Long-Term Debt” for more details.
(3)
Represents total revenues divided by the average of the number of full-time equivalent employees at the beginning of the year and the number of full-time equivalent employees at the end of the year.
(4)
Stock price at year-end divided by net income per share diluted.
(5)
Represents net income divided by total shareholders’ equity as of the beginning of the year.

22


ITEM 7. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.
General
The following discussion should be read in conjunction with our Consolidated Financial Statements and the related Notes to those Financial Statements included elsewhere in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. In addition, please see “Information Regarding Non-GAAP Measures” below, regarding important information on non-GAAP financial measures contained in our discussion and analysis.
We are a diversified insurance agency, wholesale brokerage, insurance programs and services organization headquartered in Daytona Beach, Florida. As an insurance intermediary, our principal sources of revenue are commissions paid by insurance companies and, to a lesser extent, fees paid directly by customers. Commission revenues generally represent a percentage of the premium paid by an insured and are affected by fluctuations in both premium rate levels charged by insurance companies and the insureds’ underlying “insurable exposure units,” which are units that insurance companies use to measure or express insurance exposed to risk (such as property values, or sales and payroll levels) to determine what premium to charge the insured. Insurance companies establish these premium rates based upon many factors, including loss experience, risk profile and reinsurance rates paid by such insurance companies, none of which we control.
We have increased revenues every year from 1993 to 2017, with the exception of 2009, when our revenues dropped 1.0%. Our revenues grew from $95.6 million in 1993 to $1.9 billion in 2017, reflecting a compound annual growth rate of 13.2%. In the same 24-year period, we increased net income from $8.1 million to $399.6 million in 2017, a compound annual growth rate of 17.6%.
The volume of business from new and existing customers, fluctuations in insurable exposure units, changes in premium rate levels, and changes in general economic and competitive conditions all affect our revenues. For example, level rates of inflation or a general decline in economic activity could limit increases in the values of insurable exposure units. Conversely, increasing costs of litigation settlements and awards could cause some customers to seek higher levels of insurance coverage. Historically, our revenues have typically grown as a result of our focus on net new business growth and acquisitions. We foster a strong, decentralized sales and service culture with the goal of consistent, sustained growth over the long-term.
The term “Organic Revenue”, a non-GAAP measure, is our core commissions and fees less (i) the core commissions and fees earned for the first twelve months by newly-acquired operations and (ii) divested business (core commissions and fees generated from offices, books of business or niches sold or terminated during the comparable period). The term “core commissions and fees” excludes profit-sharing contingent commissions and guaranteed supplemental commissions, and therefore represents the revenues earned directly from specific insurance policies sold, and specific fee-based services rendered. “Organic Revenue” is reported in this manner in order to express the current year’s core commissions and fees on a comparable basis with the prior year’s core commissions and fees. The resulting net change reflects the aggregate changes attributable to (i) net new and lost accounts, (ii) net changes in our customers’ exposure units, (iii) net changes in insurance premium rates or the commission rate paid to us by our carrier partners, and (iv) the net change in fees paid to us by our customers. Organic Revenue is reported in the “Results of Operations - Segment Information” of this Form 10-K.
We also earn “profit-sharing contingent commissions,” which are profit-sharing commissions based primarily on underwriting results, but which may also reflect considerations for volume, growth and/or retention. These commissions are primarily received in the first and second quarters of each year, based upon the aforementioned considerations for the prior year(s). Over the last three years, profit-sharing contingent commissions have averaged approximately 3.2% of the previous year’s total commissions and fees. Profit-sharing contingent commissions are included in our total commissions and fees in the Consolidated Statement of Income in the year received.
Certain insurance companies offer guaranteed fixed-base agreements, referred to as “Guaranteed Supplemental Commissions” (“GSCs”) in lieu of profit-sharing contingent commissions. Since GSCs are not subject to the uncertainty of loss ratios, they are accrued throughout the year based upon actual premiums written. For the year ended December 31, 2017 , we had earned $10.4 million of GSCs, of which $8.5 million remained accrued at December 31, 2017 as most of this will be collected in the first quarter of 2018. For the years ended December 31, 2017 , 2016 , and 2015 , we earned $10.4 million, $11.5 million and $10.0 million, respectively, from GSCs.
Fee revenues relate to fees negotiated in lieu of commissions, which are recognized as services are rendered. Fee revenues have historically been generated primarily by: (1) our Services Segment, which provides insurance-related services, including third-party claims administration and comprehensive medical utilization management services in both the workers’ compensation and all-lines liability arenas, as well as Medicare Set-aside services, Social Security disability and Medicare benefits advocacy services, and claims adjusting services, (2) our National Programs and Wholesale Brokerage Segments, which earn fees primarily for the issuance of insurance policies on behalf of insurance companies and to a lesser extent (3) our Retail Segment in our large-account customer base. Our services are provided over a period of time, which is typically one year. Fee revenues as a percentage of our total commissions and fees, represented 31.5% in 2017 , 31.3% in 2016 and 30.6% in 2015 .
Additionally, our profit-sharing contingent commissions and GSCs for the year ended December 31, 2017 decreased by $2.9 million over 2016 primarily as a result of a decrease in profit-sharing contingent commissions and GSCs in the Retail and Wholesale Brokerage Segments as a result of increased loss ratios and lower premium rates, partially offset by an increase in profit-sharing contingent commissions and GSCs in the National Programs Segment. Other income increased by $20.1 million primarily as a result of a legal settlement recognized in the first quarter of 2017.

23


For the years ended December 31, 2017 and 2016 , our commissions and fees growth rate was 5.4% and 6.4% , respectively, and our consolidated organic revenue growth rate was 4.4% and 3.0% , respectively. Additionally, each of our four segments recorded positive organic revenue growth for the year ended December 31, 2017 . In the event that the gradual increases in insurable exposure units that occurred in the past few years continues through 2018 and premium rate changes are similar with 2017, we believe we will continue to see positive quarterly organic revenue growth rates in 2018.
Historically, investment income has consisted primarily of interest earnings on premiums and advance premiums collected and held in a fiduciary capacity before being remitted to insurance companies. Our policy is to invest available funds in high-quality, short-term fixed income investment securities. Investment income also includes gains and losses realized from the sale of investments. Other income primarily reflects legal settlements and other miscellaneous income.
Income before income taxes for the year ended December 31, 2017 increased over 2016 by $26.2 million , primarily as a result of a legal settlement recorded in the first quarter of 2017 and net new business and acquisitions completed in the past twelve months.
Information Regarding Non-GAAP Measures
In the discussion and analysis of our results of operations, in addition to reporting financial results in accordance with GAAP, we provide information regarding the following non-GAAP measures: Organic Revenue, organic revenue growth, and organic revenue growth rate. We view each of these non-GAAP measures as important indicators when assessing and evaluating our performance on a consolidated basis and for each of our segments because they allow us to determine a comparable, but non-GAAP, measurement of revenue growth that is associated with the revenue sources that were a part of our business in both the current and prior year and that are expected to continue in the future.  These measures are not in accordance with, or an alternative to the GAAP information provided in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. We believe that presenting these non-GAAP measures allows readers of our financial statements to measure, analyze and compare our consolidated growth, the growth of each of our segments, and certain aspects of our operating performance from period to period in a meaningful and consistent manner that may not be otherwise apparent on a GAAP basis. Our industry peers may provide similar supplemental non-GAAP information with respect to one or more of these measures, although they may not use the same or comparable terminology and may not make identical adjustments.  This supplemental financial information should be considered in addition to, not in lieu of, our Consolidated Financial Statements.
Tabular reconciliations of this supplemental non-GAAP financial information to our most comparable GAAP information are contained in this Annual Report on Form 10-K under “Results of Operation - Segment Information.”
Acquisitions
Part of our business strategy is to attract high-quality insurance intermediaries to join our operations. From 1993 through the fourth quarter of 2017 , we acquired 490 insurance intermediary operations, excluding acquired books of business (customer accounts). During the year ended December 31, 2017 , the Company acquired the assets and assumed certain liabilities of eleven insurance intermediaries and one book of business (customer accounts). Collectively, these acquired business that had annualized revenues of approximately $17.5 million.
Critical Accounting Policies
Our Consolidated Financial Statements are prepared in accordance with U.S. GAAP. The preparation of these financial statements requires us to make estimates and judgments that affect the reported amounts of assets, liabilities, revenues and expenses. We continually evaluate our estimates, which are based upon historical experience and on assumptions that we believe to be reasonable under the circumstances. These estimates form the basis for our judgments about the carrying values of our assets and liabilities, of which values are not readily apparent from other sources. Actual results may differ from these estimates.
We believe that of our significant accounting and reporting policies, the more critical policies include our accounting for revenue recognition, business combinations and purchase price allocations, intangible asset impairments, non-cash stock-based compensation and reserves for litigation. In particular, the accounting for these areas requires significant use of judgment to be made by management. Different assumptions in the application of these policies could result in material changes in our consolidated financial position or consolidated results of operations. Refer to Note 1 “Summary of Significant Accounting Policies” in the “Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements” for a discussion of the impacts for adopting Accounting Standards Update No. 2014-09, “Revenue from Contracts with Customers (Topic 606).
Revenue Recognition
Commission revenues are recognized as of the effective date of the insurance policy or the date on which the policy premium is processed into our systems and invoiced to the customer, whichever is later. Commission revenues related to installment billings are recognized on the later of the date effective or invoiced, with the exception of our Arrowhead business which follows a policy of recognizing on the later of the date effective or processed into our systems regardless of the billing arrangement. Management determines the policy cancellation reserve based upon historical cancellation experience adjusted in accordance with known circumstances. Subsequent commission adjustments are recognized upon our receipt of notification from insurance companies concerning matters necessitating such adjustments. Profit-sharing contingent commissions are recognized when determinable, which is generally when such commissions are received from insurance

24


companies, or periodically when we receive formal notification of the amount of such payments. Fee revenues, and commissions for employee benefits coverages and workers’ compensation programs, are recognized as services are rendered. Please see Note 1 in the “Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements” for changes to our revenue recognition policies that are effective January 1, 2018 as prescribed by new accounting pronouncements.
Business Combinations and Purchase Price Allocations
We have acquired significant intangible assets through acquisitions of businesses. These assets generally consist of purchased customer accounts, non-compete agreements, and the excess of purchase prices over the fair value of identifiable net assets acquired (goodwill). The determination of estimated useful lives and the allocation of purchase price to intangible assets requires significant judgment and affects the amount of future amortization and possible impairment charges.
All of our business combinations initiated after June 30, 2001 have been accounted for using the acquisition method. In connection with these acquisitions, we record the estimated value of the net tangible assets purchased and the value of the identifiable intangible assets purchased, which typically consist of purchased customer accounts and non-compete agreements. Purchased customer accounts include the physical records and files obtained from acquired businesses that contain information about insurance policies, customers and other matters essential to policy renewals. However, they primarily represent the present value of the underlying cash flows expected to be received over the estimated future renewal periods of the insurance policies comprising those purchased customer accounts. The valuation of purchased customer accounts involves significant estimates and assumptions concerning matters such as cancellation frequency, expenses and discount rates. Any change in these assumptions could affect the carrying value of purchased customer accounts. Non-compete agreements are valued based upon their duration and any unique features of the particular agreements. Purchased customer accounts and non-compete agreements are amortized on a straight-line basis over the related estimated lives and contract periods, which range from 3 to 15 years. The excess of the purchase price of an acquisition over the fair value of the identifiable tangible and intangible assets is assigned to goodwill and is not amortized.
Acquisition purchase prices are typically based upon a multiple of average annual operating profit or core revenue earned over a one to three-year period within a minimum and maximum price range. The recorded purchase prices for all acquisitions consummated after January 1, 2009 include an estimation of the fair value of liabilities associated with any potential earn-out provisions. Subsequent changes in the fair value of earn-out obligations are recorded in the Consolidated Statement of Income when changes to the expected performance of the associated business are realized.
The fair value of earn-out obligations is based upon the present value of the expected future payments to be made to the sellers of the acquired businesses in accordance with the provisions contained in the respective purchase agreements. In determining fair value, the acquired business’s future performance is estimated using financial projections developed by management for the acquired business, and this estimate reflects market participant assumptions regarding revenue growth and/or profitability. The expected future payments are estimated on the basis of the earn-out formula and performance targets specified in each purchase agreement compared to the associated financial projections. These estimates are then discounted to a present value using a risk-adjusted rate that takes into consideration the likelihood that the forecasted earn-out payments will be made.
Intangible Assets Impairment
Goodwill is subject to at least an annual assessment for impairment measured by a fair-value-based test. Amortizable intangible assets are amortized over their useful lives and are subject to an impairment review based upon an estimate of the undiscounted future cash flows resulting from the use of the assets. To determine if there is potential impairment of goodwill, we compare the fair value of each reporting unit with its carrying value. If the fair value of the reporting unit is less than its carrying value, an impairment loss would be recorded to the extent that the fair value of the goodwill within the reporting unit is less than its carrying value. Fair value is estimated based upon multiples of earnings before interest, income taxes, depreciation, amortization and change in estimated acquisition earn-out payables (“EBITDAC”), or on a discounted cash flow basis.
Management assesses the recoverability of our goodwill and our amortizable intangibles and other long-lived assets annually and whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying value of such assets may not be recoverable. Any of the following factors, if present, may trigger an impairment review: (i) a significant underperformance relative to historical or projected future operating results, (ii) a significant negative industry or economic trend, and (iii) a significant decline in our market capitalization. If the recoverability of these assets is unlikely because of the existence of one or more of the above-referenced factors, an impairment analysis is performed. Management must make assumptions regarding estimated future cash flows and other factors to determine the fair value of these assets. If these estimates or related assumptions change in the future, we may be required to revise the assessment and, if appropriate, record an impairment charge. We completed our most recent evaluation of impairment for goodwill as of November 30, 2017 and determined that the fair value of goodwill exceeded the carrying value of such assets. Additionally, there have been no impairments recorded for amortizable intangible assets for the years ended December 31, 2017, 2016 and 2015.

25


Non-Cash Stock-Based Compensation
We grant non-vested stock awards, and to a lesser extent, stock options to our employees, with the related compensation expense recognized in the financial statements over the associated service period based upon the grant-date fair value of those awards.
During the first quarter of 2016, the performance conditions for approximately 1.4 million shares of the Company’s common stock granted under the Company’s Stock Incentive Plan were determined by the Compensation Committee to have been satisfied relative to performance-based grants issued in 2011. These grants had a performance measurement period that concluded on December 31, 2015.  The vesting condition for these grants requires continuous employment for a period of up to ten years from the January 2011 grant date in order for the awarded shares to become fully vested and nonforfeitable.  As a result of the awarding of these shares, the grantees became eligible to receive payments of dividends and exercise voting privileges after the awarding date.
During the first quarter of 2017, the performance conditions for approximately 169,000 shares of the Company’s common stock granted under the Company’s Stock Incentive Plan were determined by the Compensation Committee to have been satisfied relative to performance-based grants issued in 2012. These grants had a performance measurement period that concluded on December 31, 2016.  The vesting condition for these grants requires continuous employment for a period of up to ten years from the January 2012 grant date in order for the awarded shares to become fully vested and nonforfeitable.  As a result of the awarding of these shares, the grantees will be eligible to receive payments of dividends and exercise voting privileges after the awarding date, and the awarded shares will be included as issued and outstanding common stock shares and included in the calculation of basic and diluted EPS.
During the first quarter of 2018, the performance conditions for 130,172 shares of the Company’s common stock granted under the Company’s Stock Incentive Plan were determined by the Compensation Committee to have been satisfied relative to performance-based grants issued in 2013. These grants had a performance measurement period that concluded on December 31, 2017.  The vesting condition for these grants requires continuous employment for a period of up to ten years from the January 2013 grant date in order for the awarded shares to become fully vested and nonforfeitable.  As a result of the awarding of these shares, the grantees will be eligible to receive payments of dividends and exercise voting privileges after the awarding date, and the awarded shares will be included as issued and outstanding common stock shares and included in the calculation of basic and diluted EPS.
Litigation and Claims
We are subject to numerous litigation claims that arise in the ordinary course of business. If it is probable that a liability has been incurred at the date of the financial statements and the amount of the loss is estimable, an accrual for the costs to resolve these claims is recorded in accrued expenses in the accompanying Consolidated Financial Statements. Professional fees related to these claims are included in other operating expenses in the accompanying Consolidated Statement of Income as incurred. Management, with the assistance of in-house and outside counsel, determines whether it is probable that a liability has been incurred and estimates the amount of loss based upon analysis of individual issues. New developments or changes in settlement strategy in dealing with these matters may significantly affect the required reserves and affect our net income.

26


RESULTS OF OPERATIONS FOR THE YEARS ENDED DECEMBER 31, 2017 , 2016 AND 2015
The following discussion and analysis regarding results of operations and liquidity and capital resources should be considered in conjunction with the accompanying Consolidated Financial Statements and related Notes.
Financial information relating to our Consolidated Financial Results is as follows:
 
(in thousands, except percentages)
2017
 
%
Change
 
2016
 
%
Change
 
2015
REVENUES
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Core commissions and fees
$
1,794,714

 
5.7
 %
 
$
1,697,308

 
6.4
 %
 
$
1,595,218

Profit-sharing contingent commissions
52,186

 
(3.4
)%
 
54,000

 
4.4
 %
 
51,707

Guaranteed supplemental commissions
10,370

 
(9.7
)%
 
11,479

 
14.5
 %
 
10,026

Commissions and fees
1,857,270

 
5.4
 %
 
1,762,787

 
6.4
 %
 
1,656,951

Investment income
1,626

 
11.7
 %
 
1,456

 
45.0
 %
 
1,004

Other income, net
22,451

 
NMF

 
2,386

 
(6.6
)%
 
2,554

Total revenues
1,881,347

 
6.5
 %
 
1,766,629

 
6.4
 %
 
1,660,509

EXPENSES
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Employee compensation and benefits
994,652

 
7.5
 %
 
925,217

 
8.0
 %
 
856,952

Other operating expenses
283,470

 
7.8
 %
 
262,872

 
4.7
 %
 
251,055

(Gain)/loss on disposal
(2,157
)
 
67.1
 %
 
(1,291
)
 
108.6
 %
 
(619
)
Amortization
85,446

 
(1.4
)%
 
86,663

 
(0.9
)%
 
87,421

Depreciation
22,698

 
8.1
 %
 
21,003

 
0.5
 %
 
20,890

Interest
38,316

 
(3.0
)%
 
39,481

 
0.6
 %
 
39,248

Change in estimated acquisition earn-out payables
9,200

 
0.2
 %
 
9,185

 
NMF

 
3,003

Total expenses
1,431,625

 
6.6
 %
 
1,343,130

 
6.8
 %
 
1,257,950

Income before income taxes
449,722

 
6.2
 %
 
423,499

 
5.2
 %
 
402,559

Income taxes
50,092

 
(69.8
)%
 
166,008

 
4.2
 %
 
159,241

NET INCOME
$
399,630

 
55.2
 %
 
$
257,491

 
5.7
 %
 
$
243,318

Organic revenue growth rate (1)
4.4
%
 
 
 
3.0
%
 
 
 
2.6
%
Employee compensation and benefits relative to total revenues
52.9
%
 
 
 
52.4
%
 
 
 
51.6
%
Other operating expenses relative to total revenues
15.1
%
 
 
 
14.9
%
 
 
 
15.1
%
Capital expenditures
$
24,192

 
 
 
$
17,765

 
 
 
$
18,375

Total assets at December 31
$
5,747,550

 
 
 
$
5,262,734

 
 
 
$
4,979,844

 
(1) A non-GAAP measure
NMF = Not a meaningful figure
Commissions and Fees
Commissions and fees, including profit-sharing contingent commissions and GSCs for 2017 , increased $94.5 million to $1,857.3 million , or 5.4% over 2016 . Core commissions and fees for 2017 increased $97.4 million , of which approximately $27.7 million represented core commissions and fees from agencies acquired since 2016 that had no comparable revenues. After accounting for divested business of $4.9 million , the remaining net increase of $74.6 million represented net new business, which reflects an organic revenue growth rate of 4.4% for core commissions and fees. Profit-sharing contingent commissions and GSCs for 2017 decreased by $2.9 million , or 4.5% , compared to the same period in 2016 . The net decrease of $2.9 million was mainly driven by a decrease in profit-sharing contingent commissions and GSCs in the Retail and Wholesale Brokerage Segments, as a result of increased loss ratios and lower premium rates, which was partially offset by an increase in profit-sharing contingent commissions and GSCs in the National Programs Segment. 
Commissions and fees, including profit-sharing contingent commissions and GSCs for 2016 , increased $105.8 million to $1,762.8 million , or 6.4% over 2015 . Core commissions and fees in 2016 increased $102.1 million , of which approximately $61.7 million represented core commissions and fees from agencies acquired since 2015 that had no comparable revenues. After accounting for divested business of $6.6 million , the remaining net increase of $47.0 million represented net new business, which reflects an organic revenue growth rate of 3.0% for

27


core commissions and fees. Profit-sharing contingent commissions and GSCs for 2016 increased by $3.7 million , or 6.1% , compared to the same period in 2015 . The net increase of $3.7 million was mainly driven by an increase in profit-sharing contingent commissions and GSCs in the Retail Segment, which was partially offset by a decrease in profit-sharing contingent commissions in the Wholesale Brokerage Segment as a result of increased loss ratios.
Investment Income
Investment income increased to $1.6 million in 2017 , compared with $1.5 million in 2016 and increased to $1.5 million in 2016 , compared with $1.0 million in 2015 . The increases in both years are due to additional interest income driven by higher average invested cash balances accompanied by higher effective earned rates of interest.
Other Income, Net
Other income for 2017 was $22.5 million , compared with $2.4 million in 2016 and $2.6 million in 2015 . Other income consists primarily of legal settlements and other miscellaneous income. In 2017, $20.0 million of other income was recognized as a result of a legal settlement in the first quarter of 2017.
Employee Compensation and Benefits
Employee compensation and benefits expense increased 7.5% , or $69.4 million , in 2017 over 2016 . This increase included $11.1 million of compensation costs related to stand-alone acquisitions that had no comparable costs in the same period of 2016 . Therefore, employee compensation and benefits expense attributable to those offices that existed in the same time periods of 2017 and 2016 increased by $58.3 million or 6.4%. This underlying employee compensation and benefits expense increase was primarily related to (i) higher bonuses due to increased revenue and operating profit as well as the additional cost associated with the Retail Segment’s performance incentive plan introduced in 2017, (ii) an increase in producer commissions driven by new and renewed business, (iii) an increase in non-cash stock-based compensation expense due to forfeiture credits recognized in 2016, and (iv) increased staff salaries attributable to salary inflation and higher volumes in portions of our business. Employee compensation and benefits expense as a percentage of total revenues was 52.9% for 2017 as compared to 52.4% for the year ended December 31, 2016 .
Employee compensation and benefits expense increased 8.0% , or $68.3 million , in 2016 over 2015 . This increase included $23.3 million of compensation costs related to stand-alone acquisitions that had no comparable costs in the same period of 2015 . Therefore, employee compensation and benefits expense attributable to those offices that existed in the same time periods of 2016 and 2015 increased by $45.0 million or 5.2%. This underlying employee compensation and benefits expense increase was primarily related to (i) higher producer commissions driven by new and renewed business, (ii) increased staff salaries that included some severance cost, (iii) increased bonuses due to higher revenue and operating profit, (iv) increased cost of health insurance, and (v) an increase in non-cash stock-based compensation expense due to forfeiture credits recognized in 2015. Employee compensation and benefits expense as a percentage of total revenues was 52.4% for 2016 as compared to 51.6% for the year ended December 31, 2015 .
Other Operating Expenses
Other operating expenses in 2017 increased 7.8% , or $20.6 million , over 2016 , of which $3.3 million was related to acquisitions that had no comparable costs in the same period of 2016 . The other operating expenses for those offices that existed in the same periods in both 2017 and 2016 increased by $17.3 million or 6.6%, which was primarily attributable to (i) higher data processing costs related to our multi-year technology investment program, (ii) the receipt of certain premium tax refunds by our National Flood Program business in 2016, and (iii) professional fees at our National Programs Division. Other operating expenses as a percentage of total revenues was 15.1% in 2017 , 14.9% in 2016 and 15.1% in 2015 .
As a percentage of total revenues, other operating expenses represented 14.9% in 2016 and 15.1% in 2015 . Other operating expenses in 2016 increased $11.8 million , or 4.7% , over 2015 , of which $9.5 million was related to acquisitions that had no comparable costs in the same period of 2015 . The other operating expenses for those offices that existed in the same periods in both 2016 and 2015 , increased by $2.3 million or 0.9%, which was primarily attributable to higher data processing costs related to our multi-year technology investment program, partially offset by the receipt of certain premium tax refunds by our National Flood Program business.
Gain or Loss on Disposal
The Company recognized gains on disposal of $2.2 million , $1.3 million and $0.6 million in 2017 , 2016 and 2015 , respectively. The change in the gain on disposal was due to activity associated with book of business sales. Although we are not in the business of selling customer accounts, we periodically sell an office or a book of business (one or more customer accounts) that we believe does not produce reasonable margins or demonstrate a potential for growth, or because doing so is in the Company’s best interest.

28


Amortization
Amortization expense decreased $1.2 million , or 1.4% , in 2017 , and decreased $0.8 million , or 0.9% , in 2016 . These decreases are as a result of certain intangibles becoming fully amortized or otherwise written off as part of disposed businesses, both of which were partially offset with amortization of new intangibles from recently acquired businesses.
Depreciation
Depreciation expense increased $1.7 million , or 8.1% , in 2017 and remained flat in 2016 as compared to 2015. The increase in 2017 is due primarily to the addition of fixed assets resulting from capital projects related to our multi-year technology investment program and other business initiatives in 2017, while the stable level of expense in 2016 versus 2015 reflected capital additions approximately equal to the value of prior capital additions that became fully depreciated.
Interest Expense
Interest expense decreased $1.2 million , or 3.0% , in 2017 , and increased $0.2 million , or 0.6% in 2016 . The decrease in 2017 was due primarily to having less total debt outstanding. The increase in 2016 was primarily due to an increase in floating interest rates related to the outstanding debt balance on the Credit Facility term loan.
Change in Estimated Acquisition Earn-Out Payables
Accounting Standards Codification (“ASC”) Topic 805-Business Combinations is the authoritative guidance requiring an acquirer to recognize 100% of the fair value of acquired assets, including goodwill, and assumed liabilities (with only limited exceptions) upon initially obtaining control of an acquired entity. Additionally, the fair value of contingent consideration arrangements (such as earn-out purchase price arrangements) at the acquisition date must be included in the purchase price consideration. As a result, the recorded purchase prices for all acquisitions consummated after January 1, 2009 include an estimation of the fair value of liabilities associated with any potential earn-out provisions. Subsequent changes in these earn-out obligations are required to be recorded in the Consolidated Statement of Income when incurred or reasonably estimated. Estimations of potential earn-out obligations are typically based upon future earnings of the acquired operations or entities, usually for periods ranging from one to three years.
The net charge or credit to the Consolidated Statement of Income for the period is the combination of the net change in the estimated acquisition earn-out payables balance, and the interest expense imputed on the outstanding balance of the estimated acquisition earn-out payables.
As of December 31, 2017 , the fair values of the estimated acquisition earn-out payables were re-evaluated and measured at fair value on a recurring basis using unobservable inputs (Level 3) as defined in ASC 820-Fair Value Measurement. The resulting net changes, as well as the interest expense accretion on the estimated acquisition earn-out payables, for the years ended December 31, 2017 , 2016 and 2015 were as follows:
(in thousands)
2017
 
2016
 
2015
Change in fair value of estimated acquisition earn-out payables
$
6,874

 
$
6,338

 
$
13

Interest expense accretion
2,326

 
2,847

 
2,990

Net change in earnings from estimated acquisition earn-out payables
$
9,200

 
$
9,185

 
$
3,003

For the years ended December 31, 2017 , 2016 and 2015 , the fair value of estimated earn-out payables was re-evaluated and increased by $6.9 million , $6.3 million and $13.0 thousand , respectively, which resulted in charges to the Consolidated Statement of Income.
As of December 31, 2017 , the estimated acquisition earn-out payables equaled $36.2 million , of which $25.1 million was recorded as accounts payable and $11.1 million was recorded as other non-current liability. As of December 31, 2016 , the estimated acquisition earn-out payables equaled $63.8 million , of which $31.8 million was recorded as accounts payable and $32.0 million was recorded as other non-current liability.
Income Taxes
The effective tax rate on income from operations was 11.1% in 2017 , 39.2% in 2016 , and 39.6% in 2015 . The decrease in the effective tax rate for 2017 was primarily driven by the revaluation of deferred tax liabilities as described in Part II, Note 9 “Income Taxes,” in addition to adoption of FASB Accounting Standards Update 2016-09, “Improvements to Employee Share Based Payment Accounting” (“ASU 2016-09”) in the first quarter of 2017. ASU 2016-09, which requires upon vesting of stock-based compensation, any tax implications be treated as a discrete credit to the income tax expense in the quarter of vesting, amends guidance issued in Accounting Standards Codification (“ASC”) Topic 718, Compensation - Stock Compensation. The decrease in the effective tax rate for 2016 is driven by several permanent tax differences along with the apportionment of taxable income in the states where we operate.

29


RESULTS OF OPERATIONS — SEGMENT INFORMATION
As discussed in Note 15 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements, we operate four reportable segments: Retail, National Programs, Wholesale Brokerage and Services. On a segmented basis, changes in amortization, depreciation and interest expenses generally result from activity associated with acquisitions. Likewise, other income in each segment reflects net gains primarily from legal settlements and miscellaneous income. As such, in evaluating the operational efficiency and leverage of a segment, management focuses on the organic revenue growth rate of core commissions and fees, the ratio of total employee compensation and benefits to total revenues, and the ratio of other operating expenses to total revenues.
The reconciliation of total commissions and fees, included in the Consolidated Statement of Income, to Organic Revenue for the years ended December 31, 2017 and 2016 is as follows:
 
For the Year Ended December 31, 
(in thousands)
2017
 
2016
Commissions and fees
$
1,857,270

 
$
1,762,787

Less profit-sharing contingent commissions
52,186

 
54,000

Less guaranteed supplemental commissions
10,370

 
11,479

Core commissions and fees
1,794,714

 
1,697,308

Less acquisition revenues
27,739

 

Less divested businesses

 
4,912

Organic Revenue
$
1,766,975

 
$
1,692,396

The organic revenue growth rates for the year ended December 31, 2017 , by Segment, are as follows:
2017
Retail (1)
 
National Programs
 
Wholesale Brokerage
 
Services
 
Total
(in thousands, except percentages)
2017
 
2016
 
2017
 
2016
 
2017
 
2016
 
2017
 
2016
 
2017
 
2016
Commissions and fees
$
942,039

 
$
916,084

 
$
479,017

 
$
447,808

 
$
271,141

 
$
242,813

 
$
165,073

 
$
156,082

 
$
1,857,270

 
$
1,762,787

Total change
$
25,955

 
 
 
$
31,209

 
 
 
$
28,328

 
 
 
$
8,991

 
 
 
$
94,483

 
 
Total growth %
2.8
%
 
 
 
7.0
%
 
 
 
11.7
%
 
 
 
5.8
%
 
 
 
5.4
%
 
 
Contingent commissions
23,377

 
25,207

 
20,123

 
17,306

 
8,686

 
11,487

 

 

 
52,186

 
54,000

GSCs
9,108

 
9,787

 
31

 
23

 
1,231

 
1,669

 

 

 
10,370

 
11,479

Core commissions and fees
$
909,554

 
$
881,090

 
$
458,863

 
$
430,479

 
$
261,224

 
$
229,657

 
$
165,073

 
$
156,082

 
$
1,794,714

 
$
1,697,308

Acquisition revenues
8,151

 

 
2,296

 

 
16,442

 

 
850

 

 
27,739

 

Divested business

 
4,838

 

 
277

 

 

 

 
(203
)
 

 
4,912

Organic Revenue (2)
$
901,403

 
$
876,252

 
$
456,567

 
$
430,202

 
$
244,782

 
$
229,657

 
$
164,223

 
$
156,285

 
$
1,766,975

 
$
1,692,396

Organic revenue growth (2)
$
25,151

 
 
 
$
26,365

 
 
 
$
15,125

 
 
 
$
7,938

 
 
 
$
74,579

 
 
Organic revenue growth % (2)
2.9
%
 
 
 
6.1
%
 
 
 
6.6
%
 
 
 
5.1
%
 
 
 
4.4
%
 
 
 
 
(1)
The Retail Segment includes commissions and fees reported in the “Other” column of the Segment Information in Note 15 of the Notes to the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements, which includes corporate and consolidation items.
(2)
A non-GAAP financial measure.

30


The reconciliation of total commissions and fees, included in the Consolidated Statement of Income, to Organic Revenue for the years ended December 31, 2016 and 2015 , is as follows:
 
For the Year Ended December 31, 
(in thousands)
2016
 
2015
Commissions and fees
$
1,762,787

 
$
1,656,951

Less profit-sharing contingent commissions
54,000

 
51,707

Less guaranteed supplemental commissions
11,479

 
10,026

Core commissions and fees
1,697,308

 
1,595,218

Less acquisition revenues
61,713

 

Less divested businesses

 
6,669

Organic Revenue
$
1,635,595

 
$
1,588,549

The organic revenue growth rates for the year ended December 31, 2016 , by Segment, are as follows:
2016
Retail (1)
 
National Programs
 
Wholesale Brokerage
 
Services
 
Total
(in thousands, except percentages)
2016
 
2015
 
2016
 
2015
 
2016
 
2015
 
2016
 
2015
 
2016
 
2015
Commissions and fees
$
916,084

 
$
866,465

 
$
447,808

 
$
428,473

 
$
242,813

 
$
216,638

 
$
156,082

 
$
145,375

 
$
1,762,787

 
$
1,656,951

Total change
$
49,619

 
 
 
$
19,335

 
 
 
$
26,175

 
 
 
$
10,707

 
 
 
$
105,836

 
 
Total growth %
5.7
%
 
 
 
4.5
%
 
 
 
12.1
%
 
 
 
7.4
%
 
 
 
6.4
%
 
 
Contingent commissions
25,207

 
22,051

 
17,306

 
15,558

 
11,487

 
14,098

 

 

 
54,000

 
51,707

GSCs
9,787

 
8,291

 
23

 
30

 
1,669

 
1,705

 

 

 
11,479

 
10,026

Core commissions and fees
$
881,090

 
$
836,123

 
$
430,479

 
$
412,885

 
$
229,657

 
$
200,835

 
$
156,082

 
$
145,375

 
$
1,697,308

 
$
1,595,218

Acquisition revenues
31,151

 

 
1,680

 

 
20,164

 

 
8,718

 

 
61,713

 

Divested business

 
1,926

 

 
1,296

 

 

 

 
3,447

 

 
6,669

Organic Revenue (2)
$
849,939

 
$
834,197

 
$
428,799

 
$
411,589

 
$
209,493

 
$
200,835

 
$
147,364

 
$
141,928

 
$
1,635,595

 
$
1,588,549

Organic revenue growth (2)
$
15,742

 
 
 
$
17,210

 
 
 
$
8,658

 
 
 
$
5,436

 
 
 
$
47,046

 
 
Organic revenue growth % (2)
1.9
%
 
 
 
4.2
%
 
 
 
4.3
%
 
 
 
3.8
%
 
 
 
3.0
%
 
 
 
 
(1)
The Retail Segment includes commissions and fees reported in the “Other” column of the Segment Information in Note 15 of the Notes to the Condensed Consolidated Financial Statements, which includes corporate and consolidation items.
(2)
A non-GAAP financial measure.
The reconciliation of total commissions and fees, included in the Consolidated Statement of Income, to Organic Revenue for the years ended December 31, 2015 and 2014 , is as follows:
 
For the Year Ended December 31, 
(in thousands)
2015
 
2014
Commissions and fees
$
1,656,951

 
$
1,567,460

Less profit-sharing contingent commissions
51,707

 
57,706

Less guaranteed supplemental commissions
10,026

 
9,851

Core commissions and fees
1,595,218

 
1,499,903

Less acquisition revenues
76,632

 

Less divested businesses

 
19,336

Organic Revenue
$
1,518,586

 
$
1,480,567


31


Segment results for 2014 have been recast to reflect the current year segmental structure. Certain reclassifications have been made to the prior year amounts reported in this Annual Report on Form 10-K in order to conform to the current year presentation.
The organic revenue growth rates for the year ended December 31, 2015 , by Segment, are as follows:
2015
Retail (1)
 
National Programs
 
Wholesale Brokerage
 
Services
 
Total
(in thousands, except percentages)
2015
 
2014
 
2015
 
2014
 
2015
 
2014
 
2015
 
2014
 
2015
 
2014
Commissions and fees
$
866,465

 
$
822,140

 
$
428,473

 
$
397,326

 
$
216,638

 
$
211,512

 
$
145,375

 
$
136,482

 
$
1,656,951

 
$
1,567,460

Total change
$
44,325

 
 
 
$
31,147

 
 
 
$
5,126

 
 
 
$
8,893

 
 
 
$
89,491

 
 
Total growth %
5.4
%
 
 
 
7.8
%
 
 
 
2.4
%
 
 
 
6.5
%
 
 
 
5.7
%
 
 
Contingent commissions
22,051

 
21,616

 
15,558

 
20,822

 
14,098

 
15,268

 

 

 
51,707

 
57,706

GSCs
8,291

 
7,730

 
30

 
21

 
1,705

 
2,100

 

 

 
10,026

 
9,851

Core commissions and fees
$
836,123

 
$
792,794

 
$
412,885

 
$
376,483

 
$
200,835