Montana firms announce merger


MISSOULA, Mont. — Two competing Missoula-based insurance companies plan to combine to form a private insurance brokerage that will serve customers in the Pacific Northwest, the companies announced.

Officials with Payne Financial Group Inc. and Western States Insurance said Monday the two companies plan to merge by the end of the year.

The combined companies have around 640 employees, serve 30 communities through 40 offices in Montana, Idaho, Washington and Oregon and anticipate generating $90 million in revenue in 2012.

The name of the new company has not been announced, but it will remain headquartered in Missoula.

— From wire reports