DEARBORN, Mich., Oct. 3, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Tampa-based AAA Auto Club South and Dearborn, Michigan-based The Auto Club Group have affiliated and combined operations effective October 1, 2011 to become the second largest AAA club in North America. The enterprise will be known as The Auto Club Group and serve members, insureds, and other customers across 11 states and two U.S. territories, including Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands; most of Illinois, Minnesota and Tennessee; and a portion of Indiana.
The combined organization will provide membership, travel, insurance, and financial services offerings to more than 8.4 million members through a network of nearly 8,000 employees in approximately 300 office locations. The enterprise will maintain corporate headquarters in both Dearborn and Tampa. Robert R. Sharp, who chaired the former Auto Club South board, will be Chairman of the Board of The Auto Club Group. Charles H. Podowski continues as Chief Executive Officer, and John A. Tomlin, former Auto Club South CEO, is Chief Operating Officer.
"We are very excited about coming together with The Auto Club Group," said Tomlin. "This will result in a broader array of high quality products and services for AAA members and greater opportunities for our employees. While we have been successful as separate AAA clubs, combining our respective strengths enhances our ability to serve our members."
"This is a terrific opportunity which allows us to better manage resources, distribute risks and invest capital in ways that promote membership growth and retention," said Podowski. "We are happy to begin our new relationship together and are confident the affiliation will provide longer-term growth possibilities for our business."
As a large property and casualty insurer and one of the largest auto insurance companies in Michigan, The Auto Club Group could provide customers in the former Auto Club South region with broader access to more insurance products and services. Likewise, the former Auto Club South's expertise in travel and the numerous cruise ports in Florida could give Midwest AAA members and consumers more direct access to unique cruise and tour experiences at competitive prices.
The Auto Club Group belongs to the national AAA federation with nearly 53 million members in the United States and Canada whose mission includes protecting and advancing freedom of mobility and improving travel safety.
SOURCE AAA Michigan