Nationwide’s Corporate History

We’ve Been Helping People Protect What’s Important for More Than 85 Years

Over the last 85 years, Nationwide has grown from a small mutual auto insurer owned by policyholders to one of the largest insurance and financial services companies in the world, with more than $158 billion in statutory assets.

Early growth came from working together with Farm Bureaus that sponsored the company. Nine Farm Bureaus continue to promote Nationwide and provide discounts to members.

The early years


Murray D. Lincoln, the leader with the longest tenure in the company's history, had a leading role in the company's formation. The Ohio Farm Bureau Federation incorporates the Farm Bureau Mutual Automobile Insurance Company with the goal of providing quality auto insurance at low rates for farmers in Ohio.


The first policy is sold, and The Ohio Farm Bureau Federation is open for business.


With help from locally based sponsoring organizations, Farm Bureau Mutual begins expanding into other states. These include West Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Vermont and North Carolina.


The company starts insuring motorists in metropolitan areas and, through the purchase of a fire insurance company, begins writing property insurance policies.


Farm Bureau Mutual operates in 12 states and the District of Columbia.

Becoming Nationwide


From 1943 on, the Farm Bureau Mutual expanded operations until it became clear that they had far outgrown their original goals – and their name. So, with a western expansion that included 20 additional states, the company changed its name to Nationwide Insurance®.


Nationwide completes its international headquarters at One Nationwide Plaza. The 40-story structure is the largest single office building in Central Ohio.


Nationwide acquires Farmland Insurance, now Nationwide Agribusiness Insurance, a 100-year-old company and America's leading farm insurer.


Nationwide Financial® goes public.


With a ground breaking in 1997, the Nationwide Arena opens providing a home to a National Hockey League franchise, the Columbus Blue Jackets.


Nationwide Bank opens to the public.


Nationwide Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company (Nationwide), purchased all of the outstanding shares of common stock of Nationwide Financial Services (NFS) it did not already own; NFS becomes a wholly-owned subsidiary of Nationwide and a private company.


We’re still owned by policyholders, but we protect a lot more than just autos owned by Ohio farmers. We’re a Fortune 100 company that offers a full range of insurance and financial services across the country, including car, motorcycle, boat, homeowners, pet, farm, life and commercial insurance, as well as administrative services, annuities, mortgages, mutual funds, pensions, long-term savings plans and specialty health services.

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