WGRReports September/October 2018

Beveridge Goes Bunyan

As in Paul Bunyan that is. After spending three decades in the auto glass industry, former Novus senior vice president Keith Beveridge saw a new business venture and went after it. Beveridge was attracted to a growing industry, where anyone can participate and that also allows a person to throw themselves into it … literally. The excitement led Beveridge to join with partners to open FlannelJax’s in St. Paul, Minn.

FlannelJax’s gives its guests the opportunity to throw axes (hatchets, really) at wooden targets and a variety of other timber sports in a safe environment.

“We had a corporate group of about 50 people [recently],” says Beveridge. “They didn’t know what to expect as they came for some team-building exercises but left with a fun experience that most of them won’t soon forget.

“We wanted a fun but safe space,” he says. “The active participants are segregated from the group and we provide ample space with both tables and chairs for the rest of the group to socialize before it is their turn to throw. The company also requires all employees, which we call Lumberjacks and Lumberjills, to receive Red Cross and proprietary FlannelJax’s training prior to coaching our guests.”

He adds, “All our activities are directly supervised by one of or Lumberjacks or Lumberjills because providing a safe but fun guest experience has been built in since day one.”

“For our corporate guests, FlannelJax’s focuses on developing activities that will increase productivity and collaboration, improve communication, motive and expand problem solving skills all while having a fantastic time,” says Beveridge.

Out of all the possible business ventures Beveridge could have chosen from, what drew him into this?

“I worked for Novus for 20 years and I really enjoyed the franchising business model. It’s satisfying to see someone take an idea and make it into something bigger. The best thing about FlannelJax’s is that it’s enjoyable and anyone can participate, and we believe we can franchise this concept,” Beveridge says.

Having fun is a different value proposition from that of the auto glass industry. “I used to work in a business that was full of needs,” he says. “People needed a repair or replacement,  but now I get to work in a business of wants – it’s liberating.”

But the work hasn’t stopped just yet. The company is already looking to open a second location and then begin franchising.

AOB Lawsuits in Florida Decrease

Auto glass lawsuits, which had increased from 2006 to 2016, are starting to decline in Florida.

“In 2006 approximately 400 auto glass assignment of benefit (AOB) lawsuits were filed against auto insurers. In 2016, nearly 20,000 lawsuits were filed,” Florida Department of Financial Services said in a January 2018 press release from the Office of the Insurance Consumer Advocate’s news page.

New stats, however, show that the number of lawsuits filed is down more than 35 percent between the first six months of 2017 to the first six months of 2018. This is according to an analysis of cases against insurers that attorney’s must report to the state’s Service of Process Reports database. Its numbers dropped from 13,475 lawsuits to 8,435 lawsuits, according to an article from the South Florida Sun Sentinel.

“We believe the number of lawsuits are being under-reported,” Logan McFaddin, regional manager of the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America, said in a written statement in an article from the South Florida Sun Sentinel.

-Emmariah Holcomb

To view the laid-in version of this article in our digital edition, CLICK HERE.

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