NEW YORK (AP) -- Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada and PVI Holdings have formed PVI Sun Life Insurance Co. Ltd., which will broaden Sun Life's reach in Asia.
The companies said that while Vietnam's economy is growing, only 5 percent of the population there has life insurance coverage.
"Vietnam's life insurance market has great potential and through PVI Sun Life we will be able to provide new products that are unique in the Vietnamese marketplace," PVI Holdings Chairman Nguyen Anh Tuan said Thursday.
Sun Life, a subsidiary of Sun Life Financial Inc., is a life insurance and retirement services provider, while PVI is a Vietnamese investment and insurance company.
PVI Holdings will own 51 percent of the joint venture, with Sun Life owning the remaining stake. PVI Sun Life Insurance is expected to start operating before year's end and is subject to regulatory approval in Canada and Vietnam.
Shares of Sun Life Financial Inc. gained 55 cents, or 2.8 percent, to $20.55 in afternoon trading. Over the past year, the stock has traded in a range of $17.40 to $31.41.