Empire Life

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The Empire Life Insurance Company
Traded asTSX:EML.PR.A
FoundedToronto, Ontario, Canada, 1923
HeadquartersKingston, Ontario, Canada
Key people
Mark Sylvia, President and CEO
Duncan N.R. Jackman, Chairman of the Board of Directors
ProductsInsurance, Investment
Number of employees
ParentE-L Financial Corporation
SubsidiariesEmpire Life Investments Inc.
Empire Life Historical Building, Kingston, ON

The Empire Life Insurance Company (Empire Life or Empire Vie) is a Canadian life insurance and financial services company with its headquarters in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. It was incorporated in 1923 and is a subsidiary of E-L Financial Corporation Limited of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The company provides individual life, health and investment products as well as group life and health products through independent distribution partners including financial advisors, management general agents, national account firms and employee benefit producers. Empire Life is the parent company of Empire Life Investments Inc, a Canadian investment management company launched in 2011.

History and ownership[edit]

Founded in 1923 by Milton Palmer Langstaff, The Empire Life Insurance Company has grown to become one of the top 10 life insurance companies in Canada.[1]

In 1929, Empire Life merged with The Commonwealth Life and Accident Insurance Company. This merger was followed by the acquisition of The Canadian Order of Odd Fellows insurance portfolio in 1934, and a subsequent merger with the Mutual Relief Life Insurance Company in 1936. Following the acquisition of the Mutual Relief Life Insurance Company, the company's head office moved from Toronto, Ontario to Kingston, Ontario.

In 1968, E-L Financial Corporation Limited [2] acquired 94% of the outstanding shares of Empire Life. In 1987, E-L Financial acquired The Montreal Life Insurance Company, as well as the life insurance operations of The Dominion of Canada General Insurance Company, and adopted the marketing name of Empire Financial Group.

As part of this acquisition, Empire Life became a subsidiary of the holding company, E-L Financial Services Limited which now owns 98.3% of the company. The remaining 1.7% of Empire Life common shares are widely held by various individual shareholders. E-L Financial Services Limited is 100% owned by E-L Financial Corporation Limited.

In 1992, Empire Life acquired a block of group insurance business from the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, and in 1993 acquired the non-participating individual insurance policies of The Citadel Life Assurance Company. In 1995, Empire Life agreed to administer and assume a block of deferred annuity and Registered Retirement Income Fund (RRIF) policies of Confederation Life Insurance Company. In 1997, Empire Life assumed a block of deferred annuity policies from Allstate Life Insurance Company of Canada. In 2000, Empire Life assumed a block of annuity and RRIF policies from Coopérants, Mutual Life Insurance Society.

On December 31, 1997, Empire Life acquired all the shares of Colonia Life Insurance Company and subsequently changed the name of the company to Concordia Life Insurance Company a year later. On January 1, 2002, Empire Life and Concordia amalgamated as one company under the name of The Empire Life Insurance Company (or L'Empire, Compagnie d'Assurance-Vie). From 1987 to 2005, Empire Life used the marketing name of Empire Financial Group but re-branded as Empire Life in 2006.[3]


Individual Insurance Term life insurance, Permanent life insurance and Critical illness insurance

Wealth Management Segregated funds, Portfolio funds, Guaranteed Interest Options (GIOs), Registered Retirement Income Fund including a Guaranteed Minimum Withdrawal Benefit (GMWB) product, Group Registered Retirement Savings Plan, Mutual Funds through Empire Life Investments Inc.

Group Benefits Small business group life and health insurance plans, group life and health insurance plans for 20+ employees, Administrative Services Only (ASO) contracts, cost plus arrangements and disability management

Sponsorships and philanthropy[edit]

  • Empire Life invests in communities across the country through charitable donations, employee volunteer hours, in-kind contributions and community sponsorships.[4]
  • Empire Life Invests $250,000 in Pathways to Education's Graduation Nation Initiative[5]

Corporate management[edit]

Mark Sylvia, President and Chief Executive Officer
Jim McKeen, Senior Vice-President, Information Technology & Chief Technology Officer
Steve Pong, BSc, Senior Vice-President, Group Solutions
Edward Gibson, FSA, FCIA, Senior Vice-President, Chief Financial Officer and Chief Actuary
Sean Kilburn, BSc, FSA, FCIA, Senior Vice-President, Retail
Richard Carty, General Counsel and Senior Vice-President
Ian Hardacre, Senior Vice-President and Chief Investment Officer

Board of directors[edit]

Chairman of the Board: Duncan N.R. Jackman
Directors: John F. Brierley, Mark J. Fuller, Harold W. Hillier, Edward M. Iacobucci, Clive P. Rowe, Mark A. Sylvia, Mark M. Taylor, Jacques Tremblay

Honorary Chairman: The Honourable Henry N. R. Jackman
Honorary Director: Rt. Hon John N. Turner

External links[edit]