Health care reform is expected to bring uncertainty for companies and greater complexity in the mandates they must meet.
For Benefit Resource Inc., health care reform brings opportunity.
The Henrietta-based health insurance and benefit administrator works with companies seeking guidance on how to figure out and implement components of health care reform. This has led to an increase in the popularity of certain plans, including health savings accounts and flexible benefit plans.
"We've seen growth in those areas, and we look forward to the next few years helping folks decide how to combat the higher costs of health care," said Thomas Guiler, co-founder and vice president.
Benefit Resource was founded in 1993, growing out of a decadelong relationship between Guiler and co-founder Anthony DiBarnaba, now president. The two worked together in the 1980s for a payroll and benefit provider, branching off to work in flexible benefit plans.
Their company was soon purchased by payroll and benefit provider Automatic Data Processing Inc.
"We worked with them for about a year and during that stint realized there was no national player for third-party administration for flexible plans," Guiler said. "We thought it was a good idea to start a company, so we started Benefit Resource Inc. in 1993."
Today the company administers tax-free benefit programs, including community benefit plans, flexible spending accounts, health reimbursement accounts and health savings accounts.
Client satisfaction is important for Benefit Resource, Guiler said. The company has customer satisfaction rates consistently above 95 percent, and grades on speedy reimbursement and courteous service are just as high.
The client base, which has grown to more than 2,300, includes a range of companies from small outfits to Fortune 500 corporations.
For 20 years the company has seen consistent growth in the range of 12 percent to 17 percent annually, DiBarnaba said. Though most of the company's expansion has taken place in Rochester, it now has salespeople in major cities including Boston, New York and Philadelphia.
There eventually could be more expansion in some of these cities, DiBarnaba said.
"We will add local support in those different cities," he said. "In New York City we already have an actual office and support people, and some other cities like Boston and Chicago are getting to the point that we could be opening some space for additional service people."
The company, which today has 110 employees, has other areas to grow in the next few years, DiBarnaba added. It just released a prepaid debit card that can have multiple uses.
Working with Mastercard, Benefit Resource offers the Brilliant Card to those without checking accounts or for use in wellness programs.
"We're finding a lot are using it for college students and high school kids to teach them how to keep a budget," DiBarnaba said. "It's a nice financial tool, and there are some really neat mobile apps that go with it to track spending and budgets."
To date the company's growth has come organically, but DiBarnaba said they might pursue some acquisitions in the coming years.
"As we do that, it will create more jobs in Rochester," he said, not yet putting a number to what this growth could be.
The company's fiscal strength has created a foundation for growth, DiBarnaba added.
"We are a profitable organization and don't have any debt, so we're able to take our earnings and reinvest them back into the company," he said. "That allows us to sustain our growth with that profitability."
The Rochester Top 100 program is presented by the Rochester Business Alliance Inc. and KPMG LLP. Launched in 1987, it recognizes the fastest-growing private companies in Greater Rochester. This year's Rochester Top 100 event will be held Nov. 6. For more information, go to rochesterbusinessalliance.com.
Benefit Resource Inc.
Health insurance and benefit administrator
2012 ranking: 99
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