Allianz has a rich, international history of serving partners and customers that spans more than a century. In the U.S., Allianz Partners and Allianz Global Assistance, our consumer-facing specialty insurance and assistance services group, have been serving the marketplace for more than 25 years, and we employ more than 1,000 people.
In 1950 in Switzerland, when people began traveling more, a team of forward-thinking business pioneers created ELVIA Travel Insurance. This year marked the beginning of our history of helping people. Twenty four years later in 1974, SACNAS-Mondial Assistance was founded in France and our mission to help people reached a new level. The creation of SACNAS-Mondial Assistance paralleled the development of the assistance business, which, in addition to travel insurance, included roadside, medical, and repatriation assistance. In 1979, AGF became a shareholder of Mondial Assistance.
During the 80s and 90s, still as two separate entities, Elvia and Mondial Assistance accompanied our corporate clients through their own changes. As they grew geographically, so did we, developing first in Europe and then gradually throughout the rest of the world. In 1995, Elvia joined Germany's Allianz Group.
In 2000, Elvia Travel Insurance and SACNAS-Mondial Assistance successfully merged and created the group as we know it today. With nearly 80 years of combined experience and know-how, we became the world's leading player in assistance, travel insurance, and customer services. We acquired World Access in the United States in April 2000 and Worldcare in Australia a year later. World Access, later rebranded Mondial Assistance USA, was founded in 1983 and was a global provider of travel insurance and assistance, including the highly respected Access America brand. Headquartered in Richmond, Virginia, Mondial Assistance USA employed more than 900 people.
In 2006, we launched a new brand identity, as well as introduced our values worldwide. This was a long-term strategic step for us. It showed our dedication to our customers and their well-being, and reflected our rich, multi-cultural diversity.
On January 1, 2007, our four French companies — Mondial Assistance, France Secours, Elvia, and SSC — merged to form Mondial Assistance, a unique entity and brand. In so doing, we confirmed and solidified our position in France. And true to our goal of international growth, we opened offices in Mexico and India. We also acquired Medvantis, a medical call-center in Switzerland. We registered our Russian office in 2007 and began operations there on March 1, 2008.
In 2014, Allianz formed Allianz Worldwide Partners, uniting three companies — Allianz Global Assistance (the world leader in travel insurance, assistance, and personal services), Allianz Worldwide Care (specialist expertise in international health, life, and disability), and Allianz Global Automotive (the leading strategic partner of car manufacturers).
As Allianz Worldwide Partners, these companies use their combined strengths and expertise to be the market leader in delivering the integrated insurance and service solutions our customers and clients rely on.
As a unified resource, we aim to improve the customer journey, continue as the B2B2C market leader, and boost our engagement with digital and technological advancements.
And in 2018, the company changed its name to Allianz Partners.