“This is a marathon business, not a sprint.”

That is how William R. Berkley, chairman and chief executiveofficer of W.R. Berkley Corporation, explains the patience that heand the rest of the management team have exercised through a periodof 15 quarters when the specialty insurance organization reportedno growth on the top line of its financial statements.

During second-quarter 2010, gross written premiums finally rose5.6 percent at the Greenwich, Conn.-based firm–a jump mainlyattributable to 21 startup operations the firm launched in the pastfive years. The startups contributed $50 million–more thanoffsetting market-driven declines in existing business for thefirst time in two years.

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