About three weeks ago, I wrote an article about PurinaCare Pet Insurance calling it quits. It turns out it wasn’t just a rumor. Pethealth, Inc. (24PetWatch) issued a press release this afternoon stating they acquired PurinaCare. The press release is a little vague on details, so it’s hard to tell if it was simply an asset buyout, mainly acquiring PurinaCare’s 12,000 policyholders or if they also acquired the licensing rights to the PurinaCare brand name.
Just hours before this announcement hit the wire, PurinaCare was still writing new business. So, the news of the acquisition may be quite a surprise to PurinaCare’s employees and policyholders.
It’s amazing to me that PurinaCare only had 12,000 policies after over six years in business. With the #1 pet brand and the marketing power of Nestle Purina, they should have been at least 10x’s that size by now. PurinaCare can’t blame it on the economy or lack of demand. Other pet insurance companies, such as Petplan and ASPCA Pet Insurance, grew at very health rates during this same time frame. It all comes down to management, poor execution and mediocrity will ruin even the best of brands.