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Sun Life Financial SWOT & PESTLE Analysis

ID : 52337853 | Jan 2018

COMPANY PROFILE - Sun Life Financial

Business Sector : Financial Services

Operating Geography : North America, Canada

About Sun Life Financial : Sun Life Financial is one of the leading financial services organization established in 1865 in Montreal, Quebec aiming to provide lifetime financial security to its customers by giving them opportunities by means of insurances, investment products and services around the world. A few countries worth mentioning includes Canada, United States, United Kingdom, Hong Kong, and Philippines etc. It has around 15,000 employees and 12,000 advisors.

Sun Life Financial Revenue : $28,573 millions (2016)

Competitive Analysis of Sun Life Financial

The SWOT analysis for Sun Life Financial is presented below:
1. Strong Asset Management.
2.Acquring companies to extend reachability
3.Diversified Investment and business
4.Proactive nature
5.Leaders in insurance
1.cost of creating values
2.Diversified organization leading to distributive focus
3. Rise in operating expenses each year
1.Research oriented investment opportunities
2.Acquiring local companies brings value addition
3.Systematic and changing approach
4.Innovation opportunities
1.New competitors (local)
2.Confusing customers with too many products / Cannibalism
3.Involvement of matters inherent uncertainty
4.Foreign currency dependency

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Detailed SWOT Analysis of Sun Life Financial



1. Strong Asset Management: The company has strong asset management presence in Philippines. The trust factor of the company is very high with reputation of being the largest non-bank affiliated asset management company in the country. Innovative schemes are the reasons which makes the company unique with cutting edge schemes. The unconditional life insurance policy which it offers is one of its kind and many more were introduced successfully in due course of time. Also, technology is playing a crucial role in asset management by implementing digital technology while surveying competitive focus market.

2. Acquisitions to extend reachability: Many companies have been acquired in order to use their already established reputation. The U.S. asset manager Ryan Labs was purchased in January 2015 to strengthen its asset management presence in United States. Prime Advisors, Inc. was also purchased to strengthen its roots in United States.

3. Diversified Investment and business: It started as a Canadian company but now is spread in the entire world, starting from developing countries like India to developed ones like the United States depicts the success of the company in terms of its reachability and risk diversification. Hence, the risk of complete wiping out of business is nominal. The company provides diversified solutions to address employee physical, mental and financial health needs by making the connections between health and business having future goal to focus on the most important needs and priorities. Through a strategic approach to health and absences and a comprehensive service offering to support organizational and employee health, they are meeting the needs of today and building a healthier future.

4. Proactive nature: The proactive nature of the company gives an upper hand in customer experience and market value enhancement as the customer feels valued which leads to more business. The company is involved in most kinds of insurance to diversify its business and support people proactively including dental insurance and voluntary insurance introduced for companies as a perk to retain the efficient and valued employees.

5. Leaders in insurance: Canadians have voted Sun Life Financial the Most Trusted Life Insurance Company helping it win the Most Trusted Brand award in 2017 for the 8th year in a row, according to the 2017 Reader's Digest Trusted Brand Survey. Sun has spread its dental insurance to cover for both preventive and diagnostic treatment to workplace solutions hereby implementing a strategic approach to health and absences and a comprehensive service offering to support organizational and employee health.


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1. New competitors: The price of the insurance is standard (high) because they are aware of the insight about the business and have to maintain a level of standard via innovation etc. and hence new or existing local companies can challenge them by providing same service with lower prices. High competition has forced the company to stop selling insurance In the US. Being at number 25 or 26 in the market had made it difficult to compete. Hence, they made a decision to emphasize and accelerate the growth of the group benefits business in which they are number 10.

2. Confusing customers with too many products: Since the insurance section showed a variety of products starting from protection to wealth business, the client might get confused regarding which plan to use since it is both money consuming as well as bound by time limitations. Firms risk cannibalizing their products when they launch too many funds at the same time. Sun Life Financial Inc. is one of the few foreign firms that have a presence in both mutual funds (MFs) and the insurance segments. While in many markets there is no such demarcation, in India, the asset management entities of MFs and insurance are separate.

3. Involvement of matters inherent uncertainty: The uncertainty which arises due to market demand shift and introduction of new schemes which are not tried and tested before involve a lot of guesstimates, assumptions and judgements with accounting policies. Thus, if the assumptions are predicted wrongly it will lead to financial losses. Also, employee benefits are of utmost importance to them as it enhances the way the company functions. However, this drains large amount in employee benefits and pretests for new launches.

4. Foreign Currency Dependency: The financial results are always calculated in the currency in which they conduct their ordinary course of business, which is referred to as functional currency. Transactions occurring in currencies other than the functional currency are translated to the functional currency using the spot exchange rates at the dates of the transactions and if the country is in crisis it will heavily impact the market share of the company and might lead to heavy loss. In the US, it has stopped selling life insurance as with the regulatory changes around surrender charges, the focus of insurers changed to selling insurance for the long term.

The PESTLE/PESTLE analysis for Sun Life Financial is presented below:
1. Trade protectionist policies of Trump administration.
2. The strong native companies influencing the political powers to stop them from entering.
1.Conflict with native insurance companies
2.Varying values in currency markets
1.Requirement for customized services
2. Availability of tools easily makes difficult to stand out among the competitors.
1. Availability of new advanced tools makes the analysis and interpretation more accurate and less cumbersome.

2. Availability of tools easily makes difficult to stand out among the competitors.
1. Absence of globally accepted tax laws and regulations.
2. Market competition with native established companies leading to legal obligations.
1. Involvement in CSR activities involving contribution towards diabetic patients.
2. Sustainability strategy and initiatives.
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Detailed PESTLE Analysis of Sun Life Financial



1. Trade protectionist policies of Trump administration: Increased protectionism policies impact global business entrants from entering the well speculated powers. Sun Life being a Canadian company may find difficult market conditions for operating in the U.S as new regulations are likely to be introduced that affect foreign companies. The new administration under Trump has withdrawn many trade agreements and is expected to make many more administrative changes in trade deals and partnerships.

2. The strong native companies influencing the political powers to stop them from entering: The native companies will influence the political powers to stop foreign companies from entering the country for business. When the local companies dominating the company cannot enter as an entity instead it enters as a collaborative company. For example, having a joint venture in Vietnam and acquisition in Malaysia, where in partnership with Khazanah (Khazanah Nasional Bhd is the strategic investment fund of the government of Malaysia). There is lot of competition and with these those two steps, they are expanding their reach in Asia from five countries to seven and these countries represent about 70% of the population and about 90% of the growth in our industry in the next decade.


1. Conflict with native insurance companies: Since the company is expanding it is causing conflict with native companies. Many times it is involving a third party to maintain quality of work with demand as per location and also collaborating with companies to maintain the same. But already established individual companies are facing threat due to the popularity of such global companies.

2. Varying values in currency markets: Being a global company, political and economic uncertainty globally is causing variations with fluctuations in the currency market. The values keep fluctuating and hence depending on the country’s economic condition and company's margins the evaluation varies. By partnering with Sun it helps clients to enhance their business, attract and retain top talent, and help covered employees protect what they love about their lives irrespective of the geographical location but with costs depending on the currency value in the market. Sun Life is partnering with Toronto’s MaRS Discovery District to gain access to a pipeline of health tech and fintech start-ups.


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This section is available only in the Complete report on purchase.


This section is available only in the Complete report on purchase.


This section is available only in the Complete report on purchase.

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Sun Life Financial SWOT and PESTLE analysis has been conducted by Jasmine Hazarika and reviewed by senior analysts from Barakaat Consulting - an Ezzi IT and Business Consulting venture.

Copyright of Sun Life Financial SWOT and PESTLE Analysis is the property of Barakaat Consulting. Please refer to the Terms and Conditions and Disclaimer for usage guidelines.