Canada Operations

From left, from RGA Canada: Jean-Pierre Cormier, Vice President, Product Development and Pricing; Martyn Gilling, Vice President, Business Development; James Ciamarro, Vice President, Longevity.

In 2017, RGA Life Reinsurance Company of Canada (RGA Canada) marked its 25th year in operation and proudly celebrated this significant milestone with both clients and associates. Partnering with clients to develop successful long-term risk and capital management solutions, the division maintained strong momentum across all business lines, writing the largest share of individual life recurring new business for the 11th consecutive year. RGA Canada also provided leading creditor, group life and health, individual health, living benefits, and longevity reinsurance services.

Amid an increasingly competitive marketplace, net premiums remained stable in 2017 at $940 million, representing 10% of RGA net premiums globally. RGA reinsured 27% of all new life insurance in Canada for a volume of $36 billion in assumed new business. The individual life underwriting team reached a new milestone, reviewing its 700,000th facultative case since the opening of RGA Canada in 1992.

Diversification into complementary product lines continued to generate growth, with reinsurance offerings outside of individual life making up 30% of total premiums. The living benefits sphere in particular proved to be fertile ground for product development opportunities. RGA Canada launched an innovative critical illness product in 2017 targeting high severity impairments as an alternative to the prevailing generalized approach, producing very positive early results.

Across all lines, RGA worked with clients to address market challenges and seize emerging opportunities. With the passage of genetic testing and privacy legislation in Canada in 2017, teams proactively engaged  with insurers to discuss implications and provide guidance. RGA continued to leverage new technologies and new sources of data to assist clients in developing innovations in design,  distribution, and underwriting that simplify the customer journey.

Canada’s Life Insurance Capital Adequacy Test (LICAT) guidelines, which redefine capital requirements for insurance and reinsurance companies, went into effect on January 1, 2018. Throughout 2017, RGA’s financial solutions experts leveraged the company’s global experience in regulatory compliance to help clients develop LICAT-compliant reinsurance structures that optimize long-term capital efficiency.

RGA Canada continued its ongoing support for the Canadian insurance industry in 2017. RGA events included the annual Actuarial, Claims, and Underwriting Seminar; Canadian Longevity Seminar; and Group Underwriting Forum. Knowledge-sharing efforts extended to research studies, benchmarking surveys, and thought leadership articles. Through their leadership positions among industry organizations, RGA professionals advanced the collaborative dialogue shaping the future of insurance.

Canada Operations Net Premiums

(in millions USD)


Canada Operations ended 2017 with $394 billion of life reinsurance in force.

Total revenues in Canada reached $1.2 billion in 2017.

For the ninth consecutive survey, RGA Canada was ranked #1 in the All Respondent Business Capability Index in NMG Consulting’s 2017 Life & Health Reinsurance study of Canadian ceding companies.


Alka Gautam

President and Chief Executive Officer,
RGA Life Reinsurance Company of Canada

What is RGA’s strategy for continued growth in Canada?

Our approach in Canada mirrors RGA’s global enterprise strategy as we work to deepen, broaden, and sharpen our capabilities. For instance, to deepen relationships with clients, we are working proactively to study the market and communicate with clients to anticipate their needs even before issuance of a formal request for proposal. We are broadening our portfolio of product offerings, particularly in the living benefits space, to meet evolving market demand. We continue to leverage innovation and operational efficiency to elevate our level of service and optimize client outcomes.

What distinguishes RGA Canada as a reinsurer of choice?

RGA celebrated 25 years in Canada in 2017. We have written more individual life business than any other company in the past decade and have been consistently ranked #1 by insurers in business capability over the same period. We measure our success through our clients’ success and work alongside them in pursuit of common goals. We are partnering to meet changing consumer needs by accelerating the insurance process. As capital and regulatory requirements evolve, we are adapting the use of reinsurance to develop customized solutions for each client. This client-centric philosophy is fundamental to the way we do business.

How can insurers stay ahead in today’s dynamic marketplace?

We live in an economy driven by innovation and technology. The insurance industry must adapt and evolve to keep pace and meet the changing demands of consumers. Our old barriers are obsolete, creating new opportunities. Innovation units – like RGAx – are changing how we develop  our businesses. At RGA we are forming new relationships with companies as we create mutually beneficial alliances, with the ultimate intention of bringing new solutions to our insurance clients to help them respond to the dynamic and increasingly digital environment. The nature and style of insurance must inevitably adjust, along with the definition and metrics of success. Winners will be those who not only adapt to this change but help accelerate its arrival. RGA is ready to lead the way.