Canada's Sun Life Financial expects to double its profit in Asia over the next five years on strong demand for insurance in key markets like China where it is keen to raise its ownership in a joint venture, reports Reuters.
“We are bullish on not just the insurance business (in Asia), but wealth management and asset management as well,” said Sun Life president & CEO, Dean Connor, adding the company’s post-tax profits of about C$450 million ($338 million) in Asia could double over five years.
Sun Life, which operates in seven Asian markets including China, Hong Kong, India, the Philippines and Malaysia, has in recent years made a series of deals in the region to acquire businesses or raise its ownership in several of those markets.
Mr Connor said Sun Life would like to increase its 25% holding in its Chinese insurance joint venture, Sun LifeEverbright Life Insurance.
Beijing said last year it planned to lift the ownership cap to 51% for foreign insurance joint ventures in 2020 and remove the limit completely two years later, which would allow for further expansion.
Sun Life Financial Asia accounted for 15% of the group’s underlying net income in the first quarter of this year, according to financial reports posted on its website.
“We have grown rapidly organically but we have also invested around a billion dollars in capital in Asia ... We will continue to look for those kind of opportunities across Asia,” Mr Connor said, referring to the company’s acquisition plans.