Turning Ideas Into Reality

"Nowhere else but in a new economy company do you see such personal motivation." Bernard DiFiore, CEO/President, BenefitMall.com

Most companies have an inspirational story about how they turned an idea into a successful reality. BenefitMall.com, an online exchange that is revolutionizing the way small business owners research and buy employee insurance and benefits, is one of those companies.

With a goal to launch their newest web site on April 10, BenefitMall.com CEO Bernard DiFiore and employees were determined to do whatever it took to meet the target date. The staff often worked more than 20 hours a day, seven days a week, foregoing sleep and the comforts of home. The boardroom conference table became a makeshift kitchen table for whatever food was brought in, and the hallways were transformed into play areas for the employees’ children who would come for visits. Midnight ice cream runs weren’t uncommon, and an on-site masseuse was booked solid. When the building’s air1 conditioning was turned off one weekend, the crew kepi working and brought in dry ice and floor fans to keep cool.

“Nowhere else hut in a new economy company do you see such personal motivation,” DiFiore says.

Perhaps the staff’s personal motivation is so strong because their belief in the company is so strong. BenefitMall.com hits truly leveled the playing field for this country’s significant small business sector in tenus of insurance and benefits. Finally, owners of small businesses (2-100 employees) can find and afford the benefits their employees deserve.

Traditionally, small businesses have only been offered limited, ami generally expensive. insurance and benefits options. Benefit-Mall.com has turned tradition on its ear by offering superior products, educational support, and fast service via technology, the Internet, and a network of 10.000 independent insurance brokers.

This combination brings together the best of both high tech and personal sen-ice-something that’s not been offered online in this category before. Thanks to . it is now possible for small business owners to provide a group of five employees the same benefits enjoyed by employees at a 500-person company,

“At the click of a mouse, our site allows small business owners to design a customized and affordable company benefit plan. With a range of tailored and accurate quotes available instantly-ami for free-small business owners can consider and easily adjust options and then work directly with an experienced broker (their own or one within the BenefitMall network) to complete the purchase. Because of our technology, this can all lie Completed in record time-about 45 minutes versus the usual 45 days,” DiFiore explains.

DiFiore is often asked why brokers are needed when much of this business is designed to happen online. DiFiore and BenefitMaIl.com have long been advocates of the independent insurance broker.

“We have always considered the broker a critical player mid an important asset in this online exchange.” he adds. “Because insurance is a complex, emotional and relationship-based issue, brokers play an integral role by offering their clients perspective, experience, and a clear understanding of their options. “

Atypical of many dotcoms. Benefit-Mall.com has a 20-year history and an established track record. In 1997, two developments changed the company’s course: It was the first to offer small group insurance quotes on the web, and it called on Bernard DiFiore to step in and improve the company’s performance.

With more than 20 years of experience in financial services and employee benefits, DiFiore has developed a keen eye for what works in a business. At BenefitMall.com. he immediately recognized the company’s strengths-a great relationship with insurance earners, superior technology, and dynamic brokers-and took the company online.

“What makes this company so unique is the excellent exchange of communication we facilitate.” notes DiFiore. “Our site and techoology allows everyone involved in the selling and buying of small group insurance to communicate with each other online-from the insurance carriers, the brokers, the small business owners and even the small business employees-and this has never been done before. We’ve got a unique business model that completely enhances the way business is done on the Internet in this industry.”

Today, BenefitMall.com is one of the largest distributors of small group insurance benefits on the Internet. A privately held company. BenefitMall.coin has offices nationwide with more than 300 employees. Through its network of more than 10,000 independent brokers. BenefitMall.com now sells Si million in new premiums each business day to the growing number of small businesses throughout the nation.

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