Sun Life Financial updated their investors on its performance, strategic goals, and medium-term financial objectives, at the company’s Investor Day 2017 event held March 9.
Their medium-term financial objectives consist of growing annual underlying earnings per share (EPS) by eight to 10 per cent, bringing underlying return on equity (ROE) to the range of 12 to 14 per cent, and having a common share dividend payout ratio of 40 to 50 per cent of underlying net income.
Four Pillar strategy
"Over the past five years, Sun Life's Four Pillar strategy has generated industry-leading shareholder returns. It combines a balanced and diversified mix of businesses that each offer good growth prospects, and a preferred risk and return on equity profile," says President and CEO of Sun Life Financial Dean Connor. “Today, we are reaffirming our commitment to our medium-term financial objectives, underpinned by organic and existing initiatives, margin improvement activities, and growth from our newly acquired businesses. Our strong capital position also provides us with flexibility to support our growth aspirations," he added.
The company’s “Four Pillars” are areas in which it aims to be a leader. The first pillar is to be a leader in Canada’s insurance and wealth solutions market; the second to be a leader in Asia; the third, to be a leader in U.S. group benefits and international high net worth solutions; and fourth, to be a leader in global asset management.
Strong momentum in Asia
In terms of progress made within these pillars, one highlight is that Sun Life has almost tripled underlying net income over the past five years in Asia. “With investments of almost $1 billion in the region since 2012, SLF Asia is well-positioned to increase its client base across the seven countries in which it operates and three billion people currently living in these markets,” said the company.
Sun Life also reported that it is gaining greater market share in global asset management. The company reiterated Sun Life Investment Management's objective of reaching $100 billion in assets under management.
Digital transformation of business models
"On the next leg of our journey, we've set a goal to become one the best insurance and asset management companies in the world. We see this objective as ambitious but achievable, and it means doing more for our Clients," Connor said. "This includes the digital transformation of our business models and client experience. By staying connected to our clients we'll earn more of their business, retain them longer, and they'll refer others to Sun Life."