State Auto Financial Corp. will have a new leader with experience in startups, innovation and restructuring once Liberty Mutual closes its $1 billion acquisition of the carrier in 2022.

Kim Garland, currently senior vice president of personal and commercial lines and managing director of State Auto Labs, will take on the job, according to the Ohio-based super-regional insurance holding company’s announcement.

Kim Garland

State Auto Labs, working with Rev1 Ventures, is State Auto’s corporate venture capital fund with investments in a number of startups and companies including Cape Analytics and Snapsheet, according to the State Auto Labs website. Garland, who joined State Auto in 2015, is credited with helping found State Auto Labs.

No decision has been announced yet regarding the Lab’s future, according to a spokesperson.

Garland also gets kudos for his work at the broader insurer. President and CEO Mike LaRocco said Garland has been key to State Auto’s rebuilding efforts for its personal lines and commercial lines businesses, leading the restructuring of both lines.

“[Garland] has been instrumental in the transformation that we began in 2015, and he’s the right person to lead State Auto into a new future,” LaRocco said in prepared remarks. “He’s produced results in regional, national and global companies and developed considerable experience in driving innovation both inside and outside the insurance industry.”

Liberty Mutual said it had no announcement on LaRocco’s future at this time.

Mike LaRocco, State Auto

Before joining State Auto, Garland was chief product officer for AIG’s Global P&C Consumer Division. Previously at AIG, he helped lead the restructuring of United Guaranty, AIG’s mortgage insurance company, as its chief operating officer and later, CEO. Before joining AIG, he managed the personal auto business at Safeco before Liberty Mutual acquired it in 2008, and also started Safeco’s former innovation company.

Garland began his insurance career at GEICO, where he held actuarial, product management roles and customer service roles. He is a member of the board of directors of Rev1 Ventures, a Columbus-based startup accelerator and venture capital fund.

The acquisition, first announced in July, will expand Liberty Mutual’s already strong position in personal lines and small commercial insurance. Through the deal, Liberty Mutual will add $2.3 billion in premium and State Auto’s network of approximately 3,400 independent agencies across 33 states. This will position it to become the second largest carrier in the independent agency distribution channel.

Source: State Auto Financial Corp.

*Material from Insurance Journal was used in this story.