Primerica Financial Services helps families achieve financial independence by providing solutions for income protection, debt management, asset protection, and asset management. In 2003, from its international headquarters in Duluth, Primerica’s staff of nearly 2,000 employees supported a base of 6 million clients and a sales force of some 100,000 representatives. Primerica distinguished itself in the life insurance industry with its “Buy Term and Invest the Difference” philosophy, a concept crucial to the company’s success since it began operations in 1977.
Established by Arthur L. Williams, a former high school football coach and insurance businessman from Columbus, the A. L. Williams Company (ALW) sold term life policies to middle-income families, expanding operations nationwide in the 1980s. Throughout its history, the company has embraced its role as the underdog in an industry once dominated by conventional insurance companies. ALW grew rapidly during the 1980s, breaking ground for its Duluth headquarters in 1984, the same year the company sold $38.3 billion in life insurance, more than any other company in the United States. ALW continued to prosper, merging with Primerica in November 1989.
The new Primerica venture realized large gains in the 1990s, and in 1998 it became part of Citigroup, the world’s largest financial services company, with more than $1 trillion in assets. At the start of the twenty-first century Primerica stands as an industry leader, with more than $450 billion of term life insurance in force and an expanded international presence serving Canada, Spain, and the United Kingdom. Today, in addition to its mainstay term life insurance products, Primerica also sells securities and lending products.