Bellingham's Oltman Insurance to merge with Lynden's S&V


Two local insurance companies have decided to join forces in order to offer more options for customers.

S&V Insurance of Lynden has agreed to merge with Bellingham's Oltman Insurance, effective Tuesday, July 1. No immediate changes are planned for either office, said Darin DeYoung, who owns Oltman Insurance with Ann Medina and Ken Van Ry.

The advantage of the merger for customers is the convenience of two offices, as well as more insurance package options, said Leonard Smit, who owns S&V with Daniel Vander Kooi. Both companies have clients in Lynden and Bellingham.

This merger is another piece to what's been a busy few years for local insurance mergers and acquisitions. This includes Locker & Ebert Insurance of Bellingham announcing earlier this month that it was merging with Blaine Insurance (a division of Employee Benefits Planning); Bellingham's Unity Group being acquired by Hub International Northwest in August 2013 and Snapper Shuler Kenner Insurance being acquired by Brown & Brown of Washington in November 2011.

The owners of Oltman and S&V decided they wanted to combine locally companies rather than pursue a sale to a larger corporation.

"Our goal is to strengthen what's been a family run business," said Vander Kooi.

Founded in 1932, Oltman Insurance is one of the oldest Bellingham insurance companies. It has 12 employees and an office in Bellingham's Fountain District. It offers personal, commercial, life and health insurance. Details about the company can be found at

S&V Insurance was founded in 2008 and has an office at 709 Front St. in Lynden. The company has eight employees. Details can be found at

Reach Business Editor Dave Gallagher at 360-715-2269 or Read the Business Blog at or get updates on Twitter at @bhamheraldbiz.

Bellingham Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service