Manulife CEO honoured to join prestigious Shanghai advisory council

Oct 18, 2011, 10:15 ET from Manulife Financial

TSX/NYSE/PSE: MFC    SEHK:945  

HONG KONG/TORONTO, Oct. 18, 2011 /PRNewswire/ - Donald A. Guloien, Chief Executive Officer of Manulife Financial, has been invited by Han Zheng, the Mayor of Shanghai, to join the prestigious International Business Leaders' Advisory Council (IBLAC), the company said today.

"Manulife has had a long and collaborative relationship with our respected partners and colleagues in China," said Mr. Guloien. "It is a great honour to be asked to help further the success of both Shanghai and China as a whole. Joining IBLAC is testament to both commitment and mutual respect."

IBLAC, an international think-tank made up of some of the world's top business leaders, meets annually to provide strategic advice on Shanghai's development and discuss potential challenges the city faces. The council began in 1989 with 12 members from seven countries, and at its most recent meeting hosted 47 members from 16 countries. IBLAC representation comes from a diverse range of industries, members include: Alcoa Inc., Bombardier Inc., Danone, Dupont, Ernst & Young, HSBC Group, Infosys Technologies, Pfizer Inc., Siemens AG and Toshiba.

Manulife has a long history in China. It first established a presence in Shanghai in 1897 and later re-entered China in 1996 - again in Shanghai. The company will celebrate its 15-year anniversary there on November 7.

Manulife's presence in China is known in large part through Manulife-Sinochem Life Insurance Co. (MSL), established in 1996 through a partnership with the Sinochem Group. MSL is the first foreign-invested joint venture life insurance company to operate in China. As of September 2011, MSL is licensed to operate in 49 cities across 12 provinces - the most of any foreign-invested joint venture insurer.

In March 2010, Manulife announced the creation of Manulife TEDA Fund Management Company Ltd., which today offers retail and institutional asset management services to more than one million customers across China.

"As a member of IBLAC, I look forward to being a contributor to Shanghai's success. Shanghai is both a symbol and test market for China's economic development, and with the world increasingly looking to China as a source of global economic stability, this work takes on global importance," said Mr. Guloien.

"Having worked in Shanghai for almost 20 years, I have had the privilege of seeing first-hand the rapid development of the Chinese economy and Shanghai's emergence as China's financial centre," said Marc Sterling, Chairman of MSL. "Manulife is honoured to contribute to and participate in this progress."

In China, Manulife has more than 14,000 employees and agents in its life insurance, asset management joint ventures and a recently established business processing centre.

About Manulife Financial

Manulife Financial is a leading Canadian-based financial services group operating in 21 countries and territories worldwide. For more than 120 years, clients have looked to Manulife for strong, reliable, trustworthy and forward-thinking solutions for their most significant financial decisions. Our international network of employees, agents and distribution partners offers financial protection and wealth management products and services to millions of clients. We provide asset management services to institutional customers worldwide as well as reinsurance solutions, specializing in property and casualty retrocession. Funds under management by Manulife Financial and its subsidiaries were Cdn$481billion (US$498 billion) as at June 30, 2011. The Company operates as Manulife Financial in Canada and Asia and primarily as John Hancock in the United States. Manulife Financial Corporation trades as 'MFC' on the TSX, NYSE and PSE, and under '945' on the SEHK. Manulife Financial can be found on the Internet at www.manulife.com.

SOURCE Manulife Financial