Top 10 Largest Insurance Companies in Canada (2024)

Canada’s insurance industry is forging ahead on a growth trajectory, despite the challenges it faces. The combined assets of the country’s largest insurance companies amount to nearly $2.6 trillion, and their gross written premiums (GWP) registered a substantial 11% increase from $204 billion to $227 billion this year. It is no surprise that most of these companies expect their businesses to perform well this year.

Canadian-Insurance-Companies-in-Canada

Canadian Infopedia presents an overview of the insurance policies offered by these top insurers and highlights some critical data from their latest annual reports. For Canadians looking for a dependable and secure insurance partner, this article can be an invaluable resource. Insurance professionals can also share this piece with their clients to help them gain industry insights that can guide them in making informed decisions and perhaps even inform them about where they may want to work.

Approach for Ranking the Largest Insurance Firms in Canada

In order to compile the list of the largest insurance companies in Canada, we followed a rigorous methodology. We analyzed the latest annual reports of the leading insurance providers in Canada. We assessed each insurer’s total assets as a metric for determining its scale and financial stability, as this is an important aspect of evaluating the company’s overall standing.

Another factor we considered was the gross written premiums (GWP) of each insurer. This metric takes into account the sum of direct and assumed written premiums prior to the deduction of reinsurance and ceding commissions. The GWP helps to determine the level of sales for the risks that an insurer retains for itself.

We believe that this thorough evaluation process helps to provide an accurate and reliable ranking of the largest insurance companies in Canada.

Top 10 Largest Canadian Insurance Companies (2024)

The following is a list of Canada’s ten largest insurance companies ranked by their total assets. It also includes their GWP for the latest financial year.

Insurance Company Total Assets (in billions) Gross Written Premiums (in billions) Headquarters
Manulife $849 billion $44.1 billion Toronto, ON
Great-West Lifeco $701.4 billion $64.7 billion Winnipeg, MB
Desjardins $407.1 billion $12.2 billion Lévis, QC
Sun Life $330.9 billion $29.1 billion Toronto, ON
Fairfax Financial $92.1 billion $27.6 billion Toronto, Canada
iA Financial $87.4 billion $14.3 billion Québec City, QC
Intact $65 billion $22.6 billion Toronto, ON
Beneva $26.8 billion $6.6 billion Québec City, QC
Empire Life $17.3 billion $1 billion Kingston, ON
Co-operators $9 billion $4.4 billion Guelph, ON

Manulife Financial Corporation

Manulife, based in Toronto, is not only the largest insurance company in Canada in terms of total assets, but it is also ranked among the top 10 insurance companies worldwide. In addition to insurance products, Manulife provides financial advisory services, wealth and asset management services to individuals, groups, and organizations. The company has a global reach, spanning across Canada, the US (primarily under the name John Hancock), Europe, and Asia.

With a workforce exceeding 40,000, Manulife has an extensive business network of 116,000 agents and thousands of distribution partners, providing services to over 34 million customers globally. According to its latest annual report, the company holds $1.3 trillion in assets under management and administration, including $400 billion in total invested assets and $300 billion in segregated funds net assets.

Manulife’s gross written premiums experienced a slight dip from the previous year, totaling $44.3 billion. The company’s shares trade under the symbols MFC on the Toronto, New York, and Philippine stock exchanges and as 945 on the Hong Kong stock exchange.

Recently, Manulife launched a policy named Manulife Vitality, which combines a health and wellness program, rewarding policyholders for leading active lifestyles. The program offers a range of wellness and prevention choices, premium reductions, and items from popular retailers.

Great-West Lifeco

Great-West Lifeco has emerged as the leader amongst all insurance companies with its impressive GWP (gross written premiums). The company witnessed an incredible increase of nearly 13% in written premiums, amounting to $57.4 billion this year. Great-West Lifeco is a subsidiary of Power Financial Corporation, a renowned investment giant.

Great-West Lifeco’s portfolio is diverse, comprising of a range of products and services such as life and health insurance, reinsurance, retirement and investment solutions, and wealth management. The company’s commitment to excellence and innovation is reflected in the quality of its offerings.

The success of Great-West Lifeco can also be attributed to its dedicated workforce of around 31,000 employees and an extensive network of over 234,500 advisors. With its vast reach, the company serves more than 38 million clients across Canada, Europe, and the United States.

Great-West Lifeco’s impressive growth is evident in its latest financials, which indicate a total asset increase of 11% from $630.5 billion last year. Its assets under management (AUM) exceeded $1 trillion, while assets under administration (AUA) reached almost $2.5 trillion.

Desjardins

Desjardins, a financial services cooperative, is not only among Canada’s largest insurance companies, but also the biggest federation of credit unions, also known as caisses populaires, in North America. With a strong presence in Ontario and the largest regional presence of any financial institution in Québec, the company has a total of 195 participating caisses in these two provinces. In addition, it has 412 accredited trainers from 114 partner organizations nationwide.

The insurer has a workforce of approximately 58,700 employees and nearly 2,460 directors in the caisse network, serving more than 7.5 million clients and members. Its annual report reveals that its total assets increased by 2.5% from $397.1 billion, while GWP climbed 5.2% from $11.6 billion last year.

Desjardins has committed almost $1.7 billion in investments to the renewable energy infrastructure sector to date. Moreover, through its GoodSpark Fund, the company has pledged $161 million of the $250 million in total funding to support economic, social, and environmental initiatives in communities, with 726 development projects already in progress.

Sun Life

Sun Life ranks as the third largest life insurance provider in Canada, falling behind only Manulife and Canada Life. However, it is not just a prominent insurer in Canada but also has a global presence operating in 26 countries, which include Australia, Hong Kong, Ireland, Japan, Singapore, United Kingdom, and United States.

The company offers a wide range of insurance and asset management services, which includes life insurance, health insurance, disability insurance, critical illness insurance, dental insurance, long-term care insurance, business insurance, savings and retirement income plans, mutual funds, segregated funds, and brokerage services.

According to Sun Life’s latest financials, the company’s total assets decreased by approximately 4% from the previous financial year. However, its GWP increased by 14% to $25.5 billion. Additionally, the company has recently committed $3.7 million in funding to support mental health programs for at-risk and marginalized youth across the country.

In conclusion, Sun Life is a significant player in the insurance industry both in Canada and globally, providing a diverse range of insurance and asset management services. By contributing to the betterment of society through its mental health programs, the company is demonstrating its commitment to social responsibility and making a positive impact on the community.

Fairfax Financial

Fairfax Financial is a prominent holding company that operates some of the most renowned brands in the insurance industry, not only in Canada but globally as well. The company’s portfolio includes Allied World, Brit Group, Crum & Foster, Northbridge Financial, Odyssey Group, and Zenith National, which are all leaders in the sector.

Aside from offering property and casualty insurance and reinsurance products, Fairfax Financial also provides investment services. With a workforce of approximately 47,000 employees, the company has established itself as a major player in the industry. According to its annual report, although its total assets decreased by 17% from $111.5 billion, its gross written premiums (GWP) increased by over 15% from $23.9 billion.

iA Financial

iA Financial is a prominent insurance company and one of the leading wealth management services providers in Canada. It boasts a vast customer base, serving over four million individuals, small and medium-sized enterprises, and large corporations.

The company operates as the parent organization of iA Financial Group, and its insurance offerings encompass life, home insurance, auto, travel, critical illness, accidental death, disability, and group insurance. Moreover, it provides a diverse range of financial services, such as annuities, retirement plans, savings products, car and home loans, mutual and segregated funds, securities, investment advice, and private wealth management.

With a workforce of 7,000, iA Financial manages a significant amount of assets. Although its total assets declined by approximately 8% from $94.7 billion, its gross written premiums (GWP) experienced a slight increase from $14.2 billion from the previous year, as stated in its annual report.

Intact Financial

Intact Financial is the leading property and casualty insurance provider in Canada, and a significant supplier of specialty insurance throughout North America. The company has an extensive customer base of approximately six million clients, which include individuals, businesses, public sector entities, and institutional organizations in the United States, Canada, Ireland, and the United Kingdom.

According to its latest financial report, Intact Financial witnessed a rise of more than 25% in GWP (Gross Written Premium) from the previous year’s $18 billion. However, the company’s total assets slightly decreased to $66.3 billion. Intact Financial has a workforce of over 26,000 employees. Additionally, the company recently disclosed the outcomes of its “Generosity in Action” initiative, through which it has promised to provide financial support to charitable organizations selected by its employees. In just two weeks, Intact Financial employees raised over $2.3 million, which the insurer matched, bringing the total amount donated to approximately $4.5 million.

Beneva

During the middle of 2020, La Capitale and SSQ Insurance, two general insurance companies, joined forces to form a unified entity named Beneva. As a result of this merger, Beneva has emerged as one of the largest insurance providers in Canada, with an extensive network of over 900 offices and 600,000 employees.

The combination of La Capitale and SSQ Insurance has proven to be fruitful for the newly formed Beneva. La Capitale has witnessed a growth of 7.2% in their total assets from the previous year, and their gross written premiums (GWP) have also surged by 10%, reaching a staggering $6 billion.

Beneva’s success in becoming one of the largest insurance companies in Canada is a testament to the strategic merger of two reputable insurance providers. With its extensive reach and skilled workforce, Beneva is well-positioned to continue its growth trajectory in the insurance industry.

Empire Life

Empire Life operates as an insurance and investment firm under the umbrella of its parent company, E-L Financial. The insurer’s offerings comprise life and critical illness insurance, along with group benefits. Additionally, Empire Life has established its own subsidiary, Empire Life Investments Inc. (ELII), which acts as an investment manager and advisor of Empire Life segregated funds and provides an array of mutual funds.

In the past year, Empire Life experienced a decrease in its total assets, which amounted to $26.8 billion. However, the gross written premiums (GWP) remained relatively constant. On the other hand, E-L Financial, which is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange, manages assets worth over $19.6 billion for more than 600,000 clients.

Co-operators

As one of the leading multi-line insurers in the nation, Co-operators serves a vast customer base of over 240 credit unions, boasting a collective membership of nearly six million individuals. This insurance cooperative offers a diverse array of coverage options, including auto, business, home, life, farm, travel, and group benefits insurance policies.

Furthermore, Co-operators has a robust investment portfolio featuring a range of investment vehicles such as annuities, tax-free savings accounts (TFSA), registered retirement savings plans (RRSP), registered education savings plans (RESP), and segregated and mutual funds. The company also offers brokerage and institutional asset management services.

In its most recent financial report, Co-operators announced impressive numbers, with total assets amounting to $9 billion and GWP (Gross Written Premium) reaching an impressive $4.4 billion.

Mfonobong Daniel

Daniel is an Editor on Nigerian Infopedia who craves for writing, researching and also watching soccer.

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