Sun Life Philippines has created a wealth management company catering to institutional investors and high-net-worth individuals who are looking to generate additional profit.
In a statement, Benedict Sison, Sun Life Philippines chief executive officer and country head said they have officially entered the trust business with the launch of Sun Life Investment Management and Trust Corp. (SLIMTC).
“We saw an opportunity to expand our business amid the continuous growth and evolution of investment products sought by both individual and institutional investors in the country,” Sison said.
At the helm of SLIMTC is Michael Gerard Enriquez, who has been appointed as president and chief investment officer following a nine-year stint as Sun Life Philippines’ head of investments.
Enriquez said Sun Life wants to diversify its client segments by tapping into the growing institutional and retirement funds market.
“We are strong in capturing retail but hardly tapping the growing institutional segment,” Enriquez said. “Several institutions have approached Sun Life in the past, but we didn’t have the platform to service them.”
Institutions only account for 10 percent of Sun Life Asset Management Co. Inc.’s (SLAMCI) total investment portfolio.
Based on the data presented by SLIMTC, institutional channel in the country is worth about P3.7 trillion. Of that amount, P1.9 trillion is contestable to external managers, of which P1.6 trillion is enabled by a trust license.
“We are missing out a huge potential market,” Enriquez admitted. “The market is growing at 10.8 percent per annum,” Enriquez said.
To enable SLIMTC, Enriquez said they will leverage on the strong leadership position of the company’s parent firm, Sun Life of Canada.
SLIMTC was established to provide multi-strategy local and global portfolio management services and deliver superior risk-adjusted returns for both individual and institutional investors in the Philippines, Enriquez said.
“There is a gap in the trust solutions and services being offered in the country. SLIMTC was envisioned to fill this gap by providing more relevant investment solutions,” Enriquez said.
“Moreover, we will also provide the needed education that will empower investors to take on more sophisticated financial instruments,” he added.
SLIMTC is the latest addition to Sun Life’s businesses in the Philippines, which include life insurance under Sun Life of Canada (Philippines), Inc., bancassurance under Sun Life Grepa Financial, Inc., and asset management under SLAMCI.