Swiss Life

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Swiss Life Holding AG
Traded as SIXSLHN
Industry Financial services
Founded 1857
Headquarters Zurich, Switzerland
Key people
Patrick Frost (CEO), Rolf Dörig (Chairman)
Products Life insurance, savings and pensions
Revenue CHF 17,969 million (2013)[1]
CHF 1,149 million (2013)[1]
Profit CHF −1,072 million (2013)[1]
AUM CHF 161,195 million (end 2013)[1]
Total assets CHF 170,530 million (end 2013)[1]
Total equity CHF 9,018 million (end 2013)[1]
Number of employees
6,992 (FTE, end 2013)[1]
Swiss Life AG headquarters in Zurich.

The Swiss Life Group is the largest life insurance company of Switzerland. The firm's headquarters are in Zurich. The Swiss Life Group has 6 992 employees and had assets under management of approximately CHF 161 195 million in 2013.[1]


Foundation and growth[edit]

Conrad Widmer established Schweizerische Rentenanstalt in 1857 as the first life insurance company in Switzerland. Alfred Escher was integrally involved in the development of the cooperative. The goal of the company was to provide Swiss families a sufficiently solid foundation by providing insurance against the uncertainties of life. In 1866 Widmer obtained a license in Prussia. A year later, the annuity establishment had business operations in Hamburg and Bremen. The German branch split from the company. All of the policies were hand written in Zurich. Beginning in 1894, the establishment was one of the first insurance institutions to offer occupational insurance. Between 1866 and 1987, Rentenanstalt expanded to Germany, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, the United Kingdom, Spain, Luxembourg, and Italy. In 1988 it took over La Suisse insurance company in Lausanne.

The first registered office of Rentenanstalt was in the Tiefenhoefe buildings on the Paradeplatz in Zurich. Rapid expansion saw the offices moving in quick succession from the Gruene Schloss on Zwingliplatz, to the Chamhaus on the Untere Zäune and finally to the Alpenquai, where the new head office was opened in 1898. Although this building was spacious for its time, further expansion in the interwar period necessitated yet another move. During 1937–¬1939 a modern building designed by the Pfister firm of architects was constructed close to the old head office. It is this building, extended during 1961–1963 and later, that houses today’s company head office in Zurich.[2]

Going corporate[edit]

In 1997 under the management of Martin Lopez, Rentenanstalt changed from a cooperative into a publicly traded company. In 1998 Rentenstalt/Swiss Life shares debuted on the SMI index. SwissLife then advanced on an expansionary strategy acquiring Livit, Banca del Gottardo, the Lloyd Continental and UTO Albis in 1999, Schweizerische Treuhandgesellschaft in 2000, a takeover of the real estate properties of Oscar Weber Holding AG in 2001. Finally in 2002, new acquisitions ceased as the company looked to restructure as many felt it was too big.


In 2003, the company changed its name to Swiss Life for all its operations except in the Netherlands where is remains under the old name Zwitser Leven. It sold its British operations to Resolution Life Group in December 2004.[3]

In November 2007, Swiss Life sold off Banca del Gottardo for 1.775 billion CHF.[4] On 3 December 2007, Swiss Life announced that it had launched a takeover bid of AWD Holding. On 13 March 2008, Swiss Life had successfully acquired a total of 86.2% of AWD.[5] Swiss Life had acquired Corpus Sireo, a German real estate asset management service provider, in the summer of 2014.

Corporate governance[edit]

Board of directors[edit]

The board of directors is responsible for the general direction of the Group and the supervision of the Corporate Executive Board.[6] On the balance sheet date of 31 December 2012, the board of directors was composed as follows:[7]

Position Name
Chairman Rolf Döring (until 2015)
Vice-chairman Gerold Bührer (until 2015)
Vice-chairman Frank Schnewlin (until 2015)
Member Wolf Becke (until 2015)
Member Damir Filipovic (until 2015)
Member Henry Peter (until 2015)
Member Franziska Tschudi (until 2015)
Member Ueli Dietiker (until 2015)
Member Frank W. Keuper (until 2015)
Member Klaus Tschüster (until 2015)
Member Adrienne Corboud Fumagalli (until 2015)

Corporate executive board[edit]

The group CEO directs the business operations of the group and works out the long-term objectives and strategic orientation of the group, together with the corporate executive board.[8]

Position Name
Group CEO Patrick Frost
Group CFO Thomas Buess
Group CIO Stefan Mächler
CEO Switzerland Ivo Furrer
CEO France Charles Relecom
CEO Germany Markus Leibundgut

Major shareholders[edit]

According to Swiss law, shareholders are obliged to disclose information regarding their shareholdings in Swiss-based companies when these amount to or exceed 3%.[9] Shareholders currently holding over 5% or over 3% of the registered shares (purchasing positions included) of Swiss Life Holding Ltd., are:[10]

Shareholder Stake (% of ordinary shares)
Talanx over 5%
Dodge & Cox over 3%
BlackRock over 3%
LSV Asset Management over 3%

Financial Information[edit]

Year Revenues (CFH Million) Operating Income (CFH Million) Profit (CFH Million) Assets under Management
2014[11] 19,102 1,169 818 199,750
2013[1] 17,969 1,149 784 171,662
2012[12] 17,046 361 (restated)[1] 99 (restated)[1] 161,195 (restated)[1]
2011 17,143 699 606 147,018
2010[13] 20,191 694 560 133,000
2009 20,219 562 277 132,022


Swiss Life offers for both individuals and corporations a variety of policies including disability insurance, accident insurance as well as annuity insurance and life insurance.


Swiss Life is a sponsor of the Swiss National Football Team, the Jazz Classics and Jazz Recitals, of the All Blues Konzert AG[14] and the Jungfrau Music Festival.[15] Additionally, Swiss Life is a partner of Solothurner Filmtage.[16]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 47°21′46″N 8°32′03″E / 47.36278°N 8.53417°E / 47.36278; 8.53417