Entertaining real-life stories with valuable lessons on how to succeed in business and in life
Entertaining and compelling real-life stories. The author is successful business, real estate, and media entrepreneur Dick Kazan.
Published on November 13th 2018
Leo Goodwin: A 50-year-old first time entrepreneur who started what is today a giant household name company.

Leo and Lillian Goodwin
Leo and Lillian Goodwin
Photo: geico.com

In 1936, during the Great Depression, Leo, an accountant and insurance salesperson, and his wife Lillian, a bookkeeper, had a great idea and the courage to act on it.

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Leo had written car insurance policies for USAA, which specializes in insuring military personnel and their families.

At a time when so many people were out of work, military people being government employees had stable jobs and could pay their premiums.

Leo and Lillian realized this financial stability also applied to other government employees, and despite the risks, GEICO was born.

The couple kept their costs low in order to price low, and GEICO grew quickly. By the end of the year, it had 12-employees and 3700-policies in place.

In 1937, to be close to the nation’s biggest concentration of government employees, the couple relocated the firm from San Antonio, TX to Washington, DC.

Today, GEICO is owned by investment giant Berkshire Hathaway (Warren Buffett) and is the nation’s 2nd largest vehicle insurer behind State Farm.

It employs 38,000 and last year’s revenues were over $25-billion.

But GEICO and its talking gecko spokesman wouldn’t exist without the foresight and courage of a middle age couple in the height of the Great Depression.

Editor's Note: To learn more https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/241346 and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GEICO or visit GEICO https://www.geico.com/

In the next KazanToday: The first African woman to win the Noble Peace Prize.


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