Aspire General Insurance Appoints Byron Storms as CEO and Chairman

 Aspire General Insurance, a leading provider of auto insurance in CA, announced the appointment of Byron Storms as its new Chairman of the Board. Storms brings with him a wealth of experience in the insurance industry, having worked in senior leadership positions at several leading insurance companies, including President of National General, taking the company public in 2014. Byron continues to serve as Aspire General’s President and CEO since joining in 2015.

“It was a natural progression and the right next step for Aspire to have Byron move into the role as Chairman of the Board,” said Jerry Keenan, past Chairman, and majority stakeholder of Aspire General. “Byron’s deep understanding of the insurance industry, combined with his strategic vision and leadership experience, makes him the ideal candidate to continue to lead Aspire into the future.”

Storms has spent over 30 years in the insurance industry, working in various roles including Senior VP of Sales, President, and CEO, as well as launching, and running a general agency. He has a proven track record of driving growth, improving operational efficiency, and delivering exceptional results to shareholders and stakeholders.

“I am honored to assume the role as Chairman of the Board for Aspire,” said Storms. “I will continue to work with the outstanding team at Aspire to deliver exceptional insurance programs to our clients and drive growth for the company.”

Storms also announced that Tom Newgarden has been appointed to Aspire’s Board of Directors. Mr. Newgarden is an analytics driven insurance executive with 30+ years of successful experience leading efforts to profitably grow carriers across the property casualty personal lines spectrum. Storms said, “Tom played an instrumental role in the successful acquisition and rehabilitation of National General Insurance (formerly GMAC insurance) and is a wealth of knowledge for us to pull from and we are lucky to have him as a board member.” Newgarden has been in many roles, including; Executive VP Chief Underwriting Officer, Chief Analytics Officer and President of National General Preferred culminating in the successful sale to Allstate Insurance for $4 billion. Advisory director and board opportunities over the years have included the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Transunion, Bunker Hill Insurance, and others.

About Aspire General Insurance Company:
Aspire General Insurance Company is a privately owned, leading provider of auto insurance in CA. With high focus on cutting edge technology for brokers/agents and insureds, exceptional customer service, and fast and fair in-house claims handling. Aspire has established a reputation as one of the top auto insurance providers in the CA market. Aspire General has been providing affordable auto insurance to Californians since 2013.

For more information, please contact:
Tyler Nicholson
VP of Marketing
Aspire General Insurance
877-789-4742 Ext. 6317
tnicholson@agicins.com

Aspire General Insurance
Tyler Nicholson
(877) 789-4742 Ext. 6317
aspiregeneral.com

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We must aspire to take India to the top 25 positions in the Global Innovation Index – Shri Piyush Goyal


The Minister of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Textiles, Shri Piyush Goyal today called upon stakeholders in the innovation ecosystem to strive to take India to the top 25 in the Global Innovation Index.  Our startups are the key reason behind India’s meteoric rise in Global Innovation Index from 76 in 2014 to 46 in 2021, Shri Goyal said. He was inaugurating ṭhe “Startup India Innovation Week Launch” virtually from New Delhi today.  


Expressing his delight at being able to participate in the first ever Startup Innovation launch week, Shri Goyal said that ‘Celebrating Innovation Ecosystem’, as a part of Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav, was also a call to action for all of us to strengthen our startup ecosystem further.


The Minister spoke of the need for institutionalizing the Startup Week Celebrations as an annual event so that we keep reviewing, reinventiing, rejuvenating and reenergizing our startup ecosystem. He said that there is a need for developing a futuristic outlook to pave the roadmap of the future while we celebrate our entrepreneurs.


This virtual week-long innovation celebration aims to commemorate the 75th year of India’s independence ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ and is designed to showcase the spread and depth of entrepreneurship across India.


The startup and innovation festival’s primary goal is to bring together the country’s key startups, entrepreneurs, investors, incubators, funding entities, banks, policymakers, and other national and international stakeholders to celebrate entrepreneurship and promote innovation. Furthermore, to exchange knowledge on nurturing startup ecosystems; to develop entrepreneurial ecosystem capacities; to mobilise global and domestic capital for startup investments; to encourage and inspire the youth for innovation and entrepreneurship; to provide market access opportunities to startups; and to showcase high-quality, high-technology, and frugal innovations from India.


The Minister emphasized that the event has been organized with whole of Government approach and in collaboration of 30 Departments.  He also announced that the Participant registration for the Innovation Week had already crossed 1 lakh.


Shri Goyal noted that this year marked the completion of  6 years of Startup India.  The launch of  ‘Startup India movement’ by Hon’ble PM in Jan’16, 2016 stirred the entrepreneurial spirit across India, he said.


Terming the startups as the harbingers of change, the Minister said that our startups have changed the mind-set from “Can do” to “Will do”. Startup India, which started as a mission to promote Innovation has today become a revolution of National Participation and National Consciousness, he observed.


Expressing confidence that the Prime Minister’s interaction with startups on the completion of 6 years of Startup India will encourage our entrepreneurs to dream big and achieve bigger, Shri Goyal said that our Startups turned COVID-19 crises into an opportunity and made 2021 the Year of unicorns; with 3rd largest number of Unicorns (82) in the world.


Shri Piyush Goyal called upon entrepreneurs to think of building Startups that focus on Healthifying people at a time when the world is facing successive waves of pandemic.


The Minister said that the New in New India symbolized the freshness of perspective and ideas that our startups bring. He added that our Startups were ‘Learning Earl, Learning Often, Learning from Experience and Learning from Others’. He asked innovators to celebrate failure, learn from their mistakes and turn them into stepping stones to success.


He outlined 3 goals for Indian entrepreneurs, ‘Make in India’, ‘Innovate in India’, and ‘Mentor the next generation of entrepreneurs’. He also said that there was a need to make our startups much more resilient so that they are well prepared to mitigate and overcome crisis situations like the pandemic.


The Minister observed that our young entrepreneurs are eager to make extreme impact and are fearless risk takers. He noted that today, almost 4 startups are recognised in India every hour with 45% belonging to Tier II & III cities and said that 46% of Startups are found by Women Entrepreneurs.


Shri Goyal highlighted that the success of IPOs of many startups showcase their power to become the new Multi-National Corporations. He said that from 2018-21, more than 6 Lakh Jobs have been created by Startups and added that in 2021 alone, more than 2 Lakh jobs have been created.  


The Minister said that our Government has been acting as a ‘facilitator’ by focusing on simplification, facilitation and bringing ease in starting & doing business. Listing some measure taken by the Government to improve Ease of Doing Business, he said that there was an 80% rebate on patent filing and 50% on trademark filing fees, relaxation in public procurement norms, Self-Certification under Labour and Environmental Laws, Funds of Funds for Startups, Income Tax exemption for 3 out of 10 years and Seed Fund Scheme of Rs. 945 Cr. An improved IPR regime has resulted in the registration of 1.16 million trademarks in last 4 years, compared to 1.1 million registrations in last 75 years, he added.


Referring to the proposed Open Network Digital Commerce (ONDC) initiative as a game changer will help our entrepreneurs to save cost as well as build trust, Shri Goyal said that ONDC would help bridge the gap between mighty Corporations and small startups and help bring in equity in the business ecosystem.


He said that the mantra for startups for further growth is SENSE- Share, Explore, Nurture, Serve and Empower.


He called upon entrepreneurs to take initiative to share their knowledge, experience, ideas and mentor others. He asked Startups to explore the unexplored areas like Rural Tourism in terms of agri-stays, hotels and homestays, creating additional income for farmers. He encouraged them to nurture new ideas and constantly try to develop new products.


The Minister also called upon innovators to focus on “Prashasan Gaon Ki Aur”, ideas to improve last mile service delivery and empower our weavers, artisans and farmers and bring the market to their doorsteps.


He opined that celebrations like the Startup India Innovation Week will definitely bring the spotlight on our innovators. The Minister said that ‘Startup India’ must become a symbol of Self Reliance and Self Confidence.


Highlights of the week-long celebration are the Hon’ble Prime Minister’s interaction with startups, result Declaration of National Startup Awards 2021, launch of Doordarshan Startup Champions 2.0 show , roundtable with Global Investors and domestic funds, launch of Open Network for Digital Commerce Digital Strategy, participation by Ministry of Education, Niti Aayog, Office of PSA, DBT, DST, MeitY, Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, among other departments, in various sessions, launch of ‘Fisheries Startup Grand Challenge’ by Department of Fisheries and pitching sessions and corporate connect programs for startups from across the country.


Smt. Anupriya Singh Patel, Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, Shri Anurag Jain, Secretary, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), Smt. Shruti Singh, Joint Secretary, DPIIT, Shri Abhiraj Singh Bhal, Co-Founder & CEO, Urban Company and Sanjeev Bikhchandani, Co-Founder, Info Edge also addressed the inaugural session.


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