How old was the person insured by the first policy sold by Industrial on November 15, 1905?
15 days old
The Industrial Life Insurance Company was founded in 1905 in Quebec City by Bernard Leonard. On November 15 of that year, the company sold its first policy and the insured was a 15-day-old baby: Victor Breton.
What did the previous head office building of the Industrial become?
L’École nationale d’administration publique (ÉNAP–University of Public Administration)
The building that housed the former headquarters of Industrial, at the corner of Charest Boulevard and Parvis Street, is still standing. It was incorporated into the architecture of ÉNAP and is a key contributor to the revitalization of the Saint-Roch district in Quebec City.
What unusual fact do the following presidents of Alliance have in common: Hormidas Laporte, Louis-Arsène Lavallée and Charles Duquette?
All three of them were mayors of Montreal
Hormidas Laporte was mayor of Montreal from 1904 to 1906, Louis-Arsène Lavallée from 1912 to 1914, and Charles Duquette from 1924 to 1926. Of note, Mr. Laporte is primarily responsible for the development and electrification of the Saint-Henri district.
On February 3, 2000, Industrial Alliance went public on the Toronto Stock Exchange. A year later, the stock price had already gone up:
At the time, the increased value of our shares in its first year on the market—a growth of 158% in the year 2000—marked the second best market performance for newly listed companies on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
In 2002, Industrial Alliance took its first position in FundEX, an independent mutual fund broker whose current offices are located in
FundEX is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Industrial Alliance with over 700 advisors across the country and over $14 billion in assets under administration.
How many employees did Industrial’s computer department have when it started in 1963?
In 1963, only 5 employees were needed to meet Industrial’s computer needs. Today, the department has over 600 employees across Canada.
Alliance’s founder, Hormidas Laporte, was a well-to-do merchant. What did he trade in mainly?
Fruits and vegetables
Grocers Laporte, Martin and Company started as successful fruit and vegetable traders, then specialized in the import of teas, wine, liquor and a variety of luxury items from Europe, Asia and the Caribbean.
The ALICO building, housing our American Amicable offices, is one of the few structures that survived the tornado that devastated Waco in 1953.
Construction on the 22-storey building began in 1910 and was completed in 1911. The ALICO Building is the tallest building in Waco and one of the only ones to survive the devastating tornado of 1953, making it a symbol of strength and stability withstanding the ravages of time.
What animal was part of the National Life logo in the early 2000s?
A goose in full flight was in the foreground on the “N” of the National Life logo. This Toronto-based company was acquired by Industrial Alliance in 1988, becoming the second insurance company west of Quebec to become part of our large Canada-wide family.
What was the motto of Alliance Nationale when it was founded in 1892?
“The harmony of her brethren overcomes”
On December 11, 1892, 74 residents of Montreal gathered together to lay down the principles of an agreement based on mutual benefit, that would become Alliance Nationale. Its motto “Vincit Concordia Fratrum” means “The harmony of her brethren overcomes”.
This great hockey player sat on the Alliance board of directors:
Jean Béliveau, who passed away in 2014, was not only a legendary hockey player but also a keen businessman! For more than ten years, he sat on the board of directors of Alliance Mutual Life Insurance Company, one of the main companies at the origins of Industrial Alliance.
Who starred in our first TV ads in 1992?
Angus the elephant
Angus was a real performing elephant who visited schools and appeared in parades, festivals and even movies. Angus was the largest elephant in captivity in the world when he died in 2006.
Since 2013, what distinction has iA Financial Group achieved each year in all its United Way/Centraide campaigns across the country?
Over $1,000,000 total raised
For the past four years, iA Financial Group has received the Thanks a Million award from United Way/Centraide Canada for raising over $1 million across all its campaigns. In 2016 alone we raised $1,383,691. Congratulations to everyone who has contributed so generously!
Founded in 1951, North West Life Canada took off in 1961 when it was purchased by a group of investors from
Acquired by Industrial Alliance in 1982, North West Life Canada marked the start of the development of our activities in western Canada. This was the first insurance company west of Quebec to become part of our large Canada-wide family.
Our Special Markets Solutions division originated from a company acquired at the turn of the century that was already specialized in this niche. That company is:
Seaboard’s special-risk products include insurance for NHL hockey players, film crew members and volunteer firefighters.
The ALICO building, which houses our American Amicable offices, was ranked the tallest building in the Southwestern U.S. for nearly 20 years, until the year
In 1911, when the announcement was made that ALICO would be the “tallest building in the South,” some cities made fun of Waco, but they soon saw this was a promise they would keep.
Alliance Nationale was founded as what sort of company in 1892?
A fraternal benefit society
Insurance companies in 19th-century Montreal were foreign-owned, and the money from the premiums was reinvested outside of Canada. Alliance Nationale was founded to counter this reality. As a fraternal benefit society, profits were shared among its members.
What was located under the great hall at 1080 Grande-Allée West until 1975?
The head office used to have a bowling alley for employees. In the 50s and 60s, there were no buildings in the vicinity of the head office, so not many places to go for entertainment.
Our mascot, Angus, showed off his sporting abilities at a local game of the:
In 2014, during a half-time show at a BC Lions game, the team sponsor mascots all played a soccer game of their own. Angus scored first, and the goal was broadcast on TSN.
In 1951, painter Jean Dallaire produced the fresco Québec under the French Regime adorning the entrance to Industrial’s new head office. This work is now valued at over:
It took Dallaire eight months to produce this famous piece. It measures 3 metres by 12 metres and took over 140 tubes of paint to produce. It can be viewed and admired at the iA Financial Group head office at 1080 Grande-Allée West.
After several decades of succeeding side by side, Alliance and Industrial decided to join forces. This merger took effect on:
January 1, 1987
At the approach of the 21st century, with the advent of decompartmentalization of financial institutions and facing increasingly fierce competition, Alliance and Industrial decided to join forces to become Industrial Alliance Life Insurance Company.
In 1895, Doctor Hector Cypihot went to Rome to obtain a special blessing for the newly founded Alliance. Which Pope granted his wish?
His Holiness Leo XIII
It was Pope Leo XIII who gave a blessing to the newly founded Alliance in the person of Hector Cypihot, who would become its president from 1937 to 1948. Mr. Cypihot was also the descendant of one of the company’s founders.
The great businessman Jean-Louis Lévesque was Industrial’s president from 1958 to 1966 and was also inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame for his contribution:
To horse racing
A member of the Order of Canada and an officer of the National Order of Quebec, Mr. Lévesque was also notably inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame for his enormous contribution to horse racing, one of his great passions.
A four-leaf clover was hidden in the Industrial head office building when it was inaugurated in 1951.
The building’s cornerstone holds a box with token items from that era, including photos, newspaper articles, the list of employees, a copy of an insurance policy, and a four-leaf clover found on the property… for good luck!
How much was the first claim paid by the Industrial Life Insurance Company in 1905?
The first life claim paid by Industrial was for a grand total of $5.05. It was paid to a mother after her child passed away after succumbing to gastroenteritis. She had insured her child 20 days earlier.
Since 2016, Clément Gignac, our senior vice-president and chief economist, has been a permanent member of the Conference of Business Economists of
Washington, DC, in the United States
Founded in 1944, the Conference of Business Economists of Washington DC gathers around 50 distinguished economists from around the world, most of them American. Historically, Canada has never had more than two representative members in the group.
Since 2012, iA Financial Group employees have been taking part in the Centraide Cup, a friendly competition in what sport?
The Centraide Cup is organized by Centraide of Greater Montreal and the Montreal Impact Foundation to fight against poverty and exclusion in the region of the Quebec metropolis. Our employees play an active role.
At the start of the millennium, Industrial Alliance provided financing for this sizable real estate complex in Halifax:
Industrial Alliance, through its Mortgage department, invested $15 million in this project, one of the largest in the Atlantic region at that time.
Angus, our star elephant who was featured in our TV ads and our very first website, lived:
At the Bowmanville Zoo, in Ontario
Angus spent 20 years in the suburbs of Oshawa. When he was about to go back to South Africa to end his days there, he died 30 hours after receiving a sedative. Today iA Financial Group sponsors Sarah and Tutume, elephants at the Granby Zoo.
In 2016, the community engagement of our Special Markets Solutions team in Calgary was recognized by:
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Canada
Our team was recognized for the $1,000,000 cumulative donation made by iA Financial Group to the LLSC since 2005, and it received a trophy for the largest fundraiser by a team representing a company during the Light the Night Walk in Calgary.
At the start of the 20th century, Alliance was one of the first companies to use this nascent field of science to ensure its growth:
In the early 1900s, Alliance hired a New York actuary, A.B. Landis, to evaluate the reserve fund, and his restatement took several years. In 1920, Alliance had a healthy financial situation and $9 million in assets.
Bernard Leonard, the founder of Industrial, was primarily an artist, painter and stained-glass window maker from
Bernard Leonard was born in Ireland in 1840. He and his family immigrated to Canada when he was just 5 years old, and he soon became an accomplished trader. His sons John K. and Esmund succeeded him as presidents of Industrial until 1950.
The first life insurance certificate from Alliance was issued to a trader in:
On June 1, 1893, the first life insurance certificate from Alliance was issued to Alexis Doutre, age 45. The monthly premium was $1.56, with an additional $0.10 for administrative fees.
In 1958, Alliance became a mutual life insurance company and adopted a new slogan, which was:
“First things first”
In 1958, with Alliance being eyed by U.S. companies, it decided to change its corporate structure to better reflect its identity and became Alliance Mutual Life Insurance Company. Industrial for its part also wanted to remain Canadian and mutualized in 1969.
In 1975, Alliance’s new head office was inaugurated. This ultramodern building featured a brand new element in the Montreal landscape of the era:
A coating of semi-reflective glass panels
The 21-storey tower at 680 Sherbrooke West, built on the same site as the previous head office, was one of the first buildings in Canada to be covered with semi-reflective glass panels.
For how long has Angus been our mascot?
In 1995, iA Financial Group created its mascot, named in honour of the elephant Angus. iA Financial Group and the elephant, the company’s symbol, have shared attributes, such as strength, family centeredness and longevity.
From 1987 to 2003, the Industrial Alliance employee newsletter (Zoom’s predecessor) was called
Tandem came about following the merger of Industrial and Alliance. Its first issue was in 1987. In 2003, following many acquisitions and the creation of Industrial Alliance Group, its name was changed to Zoom.
Before becoming president of Alliance, he was a member of federal and provincial parliament, Minister of National Revenue and Minister of Justice of Canada, and lieutenant-governor of Quebec:
Léon-Esioff Patenaude had a career in both federal and provincial politics from 1908 to 1928. In 1934, he was named lieutenant governor of Quebec.
In 1990, a water leak soaked thousands of microfiches containing client information. How was this problem resolved?
They were dried one by one with a hair dryer
To deal with the situation, around 10 students were hired to help employees dry the microfiches one by one using hair dryers that were purchased for the occasion. Nowadays, document scanning and imaging avoids this type of issues.
Since 2007, several gardens and public spaces in Quebec City have been fed with the food waste from our cafeteria at 1080 Grande-Allée West.
Each week, most of the waste from the 5,100 meals served is recovered by the City of Quebec and transformed into compost with the assistance of a local industry, providing nutrients to City facilities or as compost offered to the general public.
In 1985, three years after acquiring North West of Canada, Industrial Alliance acquired North West of America, whose head office was in:
The mandate of North West of America was to develop the Western U.S. market, together with North West of Canada. Nearly two thirds of North West’s business at the time was in the United States.
Since 2004, Industrial Alliance has focused its brand awareness campaign on Vancouver and Toronto. In Hogtown, giant ads were recently displayed at
For several weeks, our ads were very visibly displayed at the corners of Yonge and Dundas Streets, two of the busiest streets in the city. This square is a prominent Toronto landmark and a venue for many public events and performances.
Stanley Brock, president of Industrial from 1966 to 1977, had his house built less than 100 metres from the head office.
In the early 1950s, Industrial purchased a lot in Sillery, a Quebec City suburb, to build a larger head office. On the unused northern portion of the lot, Industrial developed a residential street, Parc-Thornhill Street, on which Stanley Brock had his home built.
In 1972, Industrial purchased two general insurance companies that form the origin of our subsidiary iA Auto and Home Insurance. They were:
Equitable Insurance and the Provincial General Insurance Company
To broaden its field of activity, Industrial diversified and created subsidiaries to provide complementary market niches. These two companies would go on to become the subsidiary Industrial General Insurance Company.
In the 2000s, Industrial Alliance was developing its wealth management activities. Of note is its welcoming of a large Toronto company in 2006:
In addition to iA Clarington, wealth management development is also handled by Investia Financial Services Inc. and Industrial Alliance Securities. The recent acquisition of HollisWealth from Scotiabank has helped us significantly increase our presence in this sector.
With over 60 years of experience in real estate management, iA Financial Group now owns more than 35 buildings in
Calgary, Montreal, Quebec City, Toronto, Vancouver and Victoria
Our real estate portfolio includes over 35 buildings from Quebec City to Victoria, with approximately 5 million square feet of rental space ready for use and market value of more than $1.4 billion.
Dr. Hector Cypihot, who was president of Alliance from 1937 to 1948, is also known to have been the first president of…
The Canadian National Institute for the Blind
Hector Cypihot was a pioneer in helping the blind make their own way in life. His son Jean continued his work by founding the Louis Braille Institute in 1953 for visually impaired men.
Thanks to you, our plush Angus has visited over…
Angus has visited at least 55 countries, including Brazil, Burundi, Cambodia, Kyrgyzstan, Honduras, Latvia and Senegal. An novel idea from our Group Insurance colleagues in Montreal that has been growing in popularity for over 10 years now.
In 1988, Industrial Alliance acquired National Life. Since it was founded in 1897, National Life had always operated out of
With operations across Canada, National Life has always had its head office in the capital city of Ontario. The 522 University building that had been its head office today houses the main Toronto offices of iA Financial Group and iA Clarington.
Prior to his career in finance and insurance, Raymond Garneau, former president of Industrial Alliance, had a brilliant political career. In particular, he was
Quebec Minister of Finance
From 1963 to 1978, Raymond Garneau spent 15 years at the service of his fellow citizens as a political advisor, member of Parliament and minister. He was Quebec Minister of Finance from 1970 to 1976.
In 1991, at least 130 Industrial Alliance employees were filmed in an episode of a popular TV series of that time. What show was is?
Montréal, ville ouverte
On July 28, 1991, during the filming of the climax of the 13th episode in the series, 130 employees took up Industrial Alliance’s invitation and were featured on the set, making up half the extras.
In the 1960s, Alliance representatives gave their clients money banks in what shape to encourage them to save?
At the time, several agents had excellent results using a money bank to encourage their clients to set aside 25¢ a day to pay their semi-annual or annual premium.
Through its artwork acquisition program, Alliance purchased a series of Montreal engravings by a famous artist named:
These engravings, around 10 in total, represent working-class neighbourhoods of Montreal at the turn of the 20th century. They can be viewed and admired at the iA Financial Group head office at 1080 Grande-Allée West.
On the 400th anniversary of Quebec City, Industrial Alliance was highly visible through a promotional device decorated in its image. What was it?
Quebec City public buses
All the shuttle buses providing access to the 400th anniversary celebration venues in Quebec City were Industrial Alliance–branded, adorned with a visual featuring an elephant, a giant ribbon, and of course, our logo.
In 1970, Industrial invested $250,000 to significantly upgrade its computer systems. This amount enabled it to add
4 kilobytes of memory
In 1970, the company invested $250,000 to add 4 KB of memory to its computer systems, which would be equivalent today to an email just a few words long!
In 1996, a Quebec insurance company just a few doors down from Industrial Alliance merged with it. That company was:
The merger with La Solidarité grew Industrial Alliance’s Career network with an additional 60 representatives. La Solidarité’s head office at 925 Grande Allée West currently serves as offices for iA Financial Group and iA Auto and Home Insurance.
What was the logo of Seaboard Life, an insurance company acquired by Industrial Alliance in 1999?
The Seaboard Life Insurance Company acquisition closed on January 6, 1999. A few months later, Seaboard merged with North West of Canada to become Industrial Alliance Pacific. These two companies fuelled our rapid growth in western Canada.
On May 27, 2000, one of Industrial Alliance’s famous clients passed away. Who was he?
A star with the Montreal Canadiens, Maurice Richard had an insurance contract with Industrial Alliance. Currently through our Special Markets Solutions sector, some National Hockey League players are clients of ours.
Our president, Yvon Charest, has already raced two Canadian Olympic athletes to the finish line in a cross-country ski race.
At the press conference announcing the association between Industrial Alliance and the Canadian Ski National Championships, Yvon Charest had a friendly race with Olympian Pierre Harvey and his son, Alex, who has since gone on to become one of Canada’s best cross-country skiers.
In the 1960s, Industrial and Alliance both passed an important milestone in their history:
Their first billion of in-force life insurance
In the 1960s, favourable economic growth led consumers to invest more in life insurance. Industrial reached the milestone of its first billion dollars of in-force life insurance in 1963, and Alliance in 1967.