is branching out from banking
into the other major financial service needed by most Americans: insurance.
Web surfers can now browse through information on life, automobile, and home
insurance on the Quicken InsureMarket Web site. While only
general information on insurance services is now available for free from
InsureMarket, Intuit said users will be able
to get real-time quotes on term life insurance and buy policies online by
Initially, only five insurance companies will offer information online.
Intuit hopes to have a large majority of regional insurance carriers
offering quotes and selling policies at the site within the next 18 months,
according to Bill Harris, executive vice president of Intuit.
"Intuit is not offering its own
insurance products. We are setting up a non-biased tool; our goal is to
become the most popular source for insurance information on the Web," Harris said in a teleconference call. He added that Intuit doesn't expect the
site to be profitable for another one or two years.
Intuit is offering the services through the Interactive Insurance Services,
which the company is negotiating to buy for $8.9 million, according to Bloomberg news service.