Manulife Financial

Manulife Financial is the biggest insurance company based in Canada. It is also the second largest in North America, and is the fifth largest life insurance company in the world. The Globe and Mail rank it as the 11th largest company in Canada by assets. Manulife is based in Toronto and has 22,000 employees worldwide. In 2008 it had net income of C$ 517 million. Its main business in Canada is aimed at high net worth individuals and it finds itself in competition with similarly placed companies such as Great-West Life Insurance and to some extent Sun Life.

In Canada Manulife offers a number of different types of services, which is wider and less focused than its foreign operations. As well as the life insurance and health insurance that makes up its core offering it also offers corporate insurance and mutual fund management, travel insurance. Through its banking division, it offers various investment services to targeted markets through affinity promotions to various alumni, professional and retiree groups and associations.

Manulife Bank of Canada offers various loans and high interest bank accounts, and after it sold its bank network was the first Canadian bank to sell solely through independent financial advisers - it is one of the pioneers of the internet to sell its products.

Manulife Financial Reinsurance

Reinsurance is the practice of offering insurance to other insurers so that they can limit their total losses if there are a very high unpredicted amount of claims. Manulife's reinsurance division makes up 6% of its revenues and has its own divisions. It is a specialist focus is on the market for long term care. As well as Canada and the US the division has a presence in Germany and Barbados.

John Hancock Financial Services

Despite having its origins and headquarters in Canada, the largest part of the Manulife Company is in the United States, with 37 percent of its revenues. Almost all of the Manulife operations in the United States run under the brand "John Hancock", a large insurer in its own right. John Hancock is a wealth manager for private individuals and an investment adviser and asset manager for the pension plans of small to medium sized companies. It has funds under management of $78.9 billion.

Manulife in Asia

Manulife has operations in ten countries in Asia - which comprise 21% of its revenue, 9% of it coming from Japan alone. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company has been involved in Asia since 1897 and it currently offers wealth management and insurance services in these markets. Japan is seen as important enough to have its own division.

Manulife Financial History

The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company was founded in 1887 on American lines and its first chairman was the then Prime Minister of Canada, Sir John MacDonald and it quickly expanded abroad. In 1958 it bought its own shares and hence the policy holders became the owners. In 1998 it reversed this and in 2004 bought John Hancock Financial Services, including its Canadian subsidiary Maritime Life which it submerged into the Manulife corporate identity.

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