SAN FRANCISCO, CA — April 22, 2005 — As a part of its ongoing commitment to safeguarding the environment, Esurance, a direct-to-consumer personal auto insurance company, announced two recent initiatives. In honor of Earth Day, Esurance engaged in a month-long sponsorship of Planet Check, an environmentally themed, one-minute radio program airing on several stations nationwide. Esurance has also engaged in a longer term partnership with San Francisco-based Friends of the Urban Forest, a non-profit organization committed to protecting and expanding San Francisco’s urban forest.
John Swigart, Esurance Managing Director and CMO, stated, “We have always been proud of our ability to help the environment by making sound business choices. In our decision-making, we have found that the green-friendly option is almost always the most cost-effective option. Our reliance on technology means that we’re a virtually paperless organization. We also chose hybrids where they were available for the vehicles used by our claims adjusters. This helps us keep our costs low, which helps us keep our insurance rates for consumers reasonable. However, this obviously has benefits for the environment. Our customers really can say they save some green with Esurance, both monetarily and environmentally.”
However, Esurance realized that it wanted to do even more to lend the planet a helping hand, embarking on its strategy of environmentally focused corporate sponsorships. Swigart added, “When we looked at the environmental benefits already inherent to our operations, we knew we could do even more to create environmental benefits. To help spread the important message of environmental responsibility, we sponsored Planet Check for the month. In terms of the paper we are still required to use in our operations, we wanted to plant trees to help offset the negative environmental impact arising from that. That’s why we have started to work with Friends of the Urban Forest.”
Planet Check’s CEO, Mo Mellady, explained, “We are honored to have forward-thinking companies like Esurance on board helping us spread the green love! Thanks to earth-friendly sponsors like Esurance, we continue to get our message out there—that saving the environment is important and that conservation is cool. Plus, it gives Planet Check’s listeners a chance to get acquainted with a company like Esurance. Esurance makes conservation a part of sound business principles, in their operations and in their advertising.”
Kelly Quirke, Executive Director of Friends of the Urban Forest, stated, “Traditionally, like most non-profits, Friends of the Urban Forest has had to do most of the outreach to get corporate dollars. It was nice, and rather novel, to have the phone ring and hear that a company was actually seeking us out to help our efforts to enhance and protect San Francisco’s urban forest. Esurance’s partnership with Friends of the Urban Forest will show how businesses and non-profits can work together to create beautiful, healthy, productive communities together.”
About Esurance Inc.
Esurance Inc., a subsidiary of White Mountains Insurance Group, Ltd. (NYSE: WTM), provides personal auto insurance direct to consumers online. Esurance is dedicated to constantly improving the way people shop for, buy, and manage their auto insurance. By combining the best of technology with industry know-how, Esurance is able to offer hassle-free auto insurance coverage with 24/7 customer service and claims handling at competitive prices.
Through Esurance’s Web site, www.esurance.com, customers can get instant quotes, view comparison quotes, buy an Esurance policy, and print their proof of insurance card— all in minutes. Esurance also offers policyholders the ability to make policy changes and file claims instantly online, demonstrating its commitment to improving the entire insurance process from quote to claim.
About Friends of the Urban Forest
Since 1981, Friends of the Urban Forest, http://www.fuf.net/, has provided financial, technical, and practical assistance to San Franciscans for tree planting, tree care, as well as community involvement and youth education. In that time, Friends of the Urban Forest has planted nearly 40,000 trees—nearly half of the street trees in San Francisco.
Neighbors organize plantings, while Friends of the Urban Forest obtains permits, removes sidewalk concrete, supplies tools and materials and selects, purchases, and delivers the trees. On planting day, Friends of the Urban Forest volunteers work side-by-side with residents. After the work is done, everyone celebrates over a community lunch. Friends of the Urban Forest’s certified arborists, assisted by volunteers and trainees, also prune and restake existing street trees. Friends of the Urban Forest seeks to increase public awareness and appreciation of the importance of trees to San Francisco. In addition to its newsletter and other periodic publications, it offers tree tours, quarterly pruning workshops, and leadership training.
About Planet Check
Planet Check, http://www.planetcheck.com, is sixty seconds of environmental news listeners can use! Planet Check is a quick, informative, compelling radio minute produced with a rock edge.
Planet Check’s one-minute reports cover a wide range of pressing topics that affect our health and world. Reports always include fun facts issued by an expert in the field. Planet Check minutes cover positive solutions like bio-diesel, solar and wind energy, organic farming, and more. Planet Check reports also cover everything from the impacts of environmental regulation to interviews with musicians who’ve gone green to make a difference.