Hallmark Financial Services Inc. (NASDAQ:HALL) Q2 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Aug 08, 2019 • 08:30 am ET


Hallmark Financial Services Inc. (NASDAQ:HALL) Q2 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript


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Greetings and welcome to the Hallmark Financial 2019 Second Quarter Conference Call. At this time, all participants are in a listen-only mode. A question-and-answer session will follow the formal presentation. [Operator Instructions] As a reminder, this conference is being recorded.

I would now like to turn the conference over to our host, David Webb, Senior Vice president, Corporate Development and Strategy. Thank you. You may begin.

David Webb

Thank you. And good morning, everyone. It is my pleasure to welcome you to the Hallmark Financial's second quarter 2019 earnings call. This is the first time the Company is hosting an earnings call. And we currently anticipate having these on a quarterly basis going forward. Joining me on the call today are Naveen Anand, President and CEO, and Jeff Passmore, Chief Financial Officer.

During the call, we will be making forward looking statements. These statements may reflect certain assumptions, expectations, beliefs and intentions which are subject to various risks and uncertainties. Investors are cautioned that actual results may differ materially from such forward looking statements. Please refer to our most recent form 10-K and other filings made with the SEC for additional details on some of the risk factors that may materially affect our results.

We may also reference certain non-GAAP financial measures in the call today. A copy of the press release containing a reconciliation of GAAP to these measures and an updated quarterly investor presentation is available on the Company's website at www.hallmarkgrp.com. I will now turn the call over to Naveen Anand, President and Chief Executive Officer of Hallmark Financial.

Naveen Anand

Thank you, David, and good morning, everyone. I'll begin the call today with some background on the Company's transformation over the last past four years, focusing on how these changes have driven meaningful improvements in our results. I will then provide a few -- a view of our results considering the current market environment. Next, Jeff will provide some additional details on our results for the quarter and then we'll open the call up for questions.

After several years of operating as a public company, we've decided to initiate quarterly conference calls. We felt the timing was appropriate, given the progress we have made to reshape our culture and transform the Company into a diversified specialty insurance company. To place this in historical perspective, when I joined the Company in late 2014, Hallmark Financial was predominantly a regional auto writer with a substantial concentration of business in commercial auto and the non-standard auto lines. However, we saw an opportunity to derive significant benefit from developing new specialty products, particularly in the small, medium enterprise space, investing in talent and technology and modernizing our infrastructure and processes.

Our business units today are now organized by product and distribution channel, led by experienced underwriting teams and supported by actuaries and data scientists. Our current function is managed in-house, comprised of experts in their areas of specialty and structured to close claims quickly and effectively. We target niche products and niche markets where there