Security Benefit Corporation might be talking more about investments, but it got its start in life insurance. Operating through subsidiaries, the company provides investment products to individual and institutional clients in all 50 states, with a focus on employees in the education, banking, health care, government, and corporate sectors. Subsidiary Security Financial Resources provides retirement plan services for some 135,000 accounts, mainly in the education market. Its Rydex SGI affiliate manages and distributes more than 140 mutual funds and exchange-traded funds; the unit has some $22 billion of assets under management. Investment advisory firm Guggenheim Partners acquired Security Benefit in 2010.
Security Benefit offers its products and services through some 27,000 financial planners and 700 broker/dealers. Its Security Benefit Life Insurance Company and First Security Benefit Life Insurance and Annuity Company of New York subsidiaries sell fixed and variable annuities. Through its se2 subsidiary, Security Benefit offers information technology services tailored to the insurance and retirement planning industry.
After more than 100 years as a mutual company, Security Benefit demutualized following the acquisition by Guggenheim Partners, which brought in an infusion of some $340 million in capital and improved Security Benefit's credit ratings. Like many of its asset manager brethren, Security Benefit felt the double sting of weakened assets and sliding sales of annuities during the recession. The company cut its workforce more than 10% in 2009.
In 2011 Michael Kiley, a managing partner at Guggenheim Partners and former president of Van Kampen Investments, was named CEO of Security Benefit. He succeeded interim chief Howard Fricke.
Security Benefit traces its roots to the Knights and Ladies of Security, a mutual benefit society begun in 1892 in Topeka, Kansas. – less