In 2012, GRUPO SURA consolidated itself as a Multilatin financial Holding Company, with a consistent and sustainable growth. In addition to the insurance operation, SURA Brand is currently well known in the pension and investment fund business through the operations in Mexico, Peru, Uruguay and Chile.
Its strength relies on the quality of its portfolio and the good performance of the strategic investments; the growing positioning of GRUPO SURA in the regional market; as well as the financial and capital structure position reflected in the positive results obtained at the end of the year.
This was a highly transformative year for GRUPO SURA, given the amount of acquisitions carried out which not only allowed us to extend our portfolio of investments but also represented a giant leap in our endeavors to gain greater international scale. Unquestionably the most important acquisition carried out that year given both the scale of the target business and the leading position gained as a result, involved the pension, insurance and investment fund assets in five different Latin American countries belonging to the Dutch Group ING.
This acquisition was first announced on July 25 and subsequently completed on December 29, 2011 after obtaining all the corresponding official authorizations in each of these countries.
Later, at the end of 2011, GRUPO SURA created its subsidiary SURA Asset Management, which is responsible for managing the ING assets acquired in 5 different countries throughout the Americas. Grupo Bolivar, the IFC, General Atlantic and Bancolombia participated as co-investors in this transaction.
Currently Grupo de Inversiones Suramericana is the majority shareholder of companies such as the Bancolombia Group, Protección, Suramericana, SURA Asset Management, Enlace Operativo, Grupo Nutresa and Inversiones Argos.
In order to provide the public with a clearer idea of the Group´s organizational structure and the roles played by the different Suramericana companies, we changed our corporate name from Suramericana de Inversiones S.A. Suramericana to Grupo de Inversiones Suramericana, by means of Public Deed No. 0722 drawn up on April 27, 2009 and filed before Medellin´s Chamber of Commerce on May 15 of this same year. With the new name of Grupo de Inversiones Suramericana (or the shortened version GRUPO SURA), we were able to better encapsulate our role as a holding company while being able to relay in a much more consistent and dynamic fashion our corporate values and vision as well as our strategic focus.
Also, our subsidiary, Inversura, changed its name to Suramericana S.A. Its insurance and social security companies, offering a comprehensive suite of risk solutions, also changed their corporate names to SEGUROS SURA (formerly Suramericana de Seguros), ARP SURA (formerly Suratep) and EPS SURA (formerly Susalud). With this single brand identity we are facilitating a greater harnessing of synergies amongst the Group, simplifying the image of our companies, segments, products, plans, services and programs, besides getting closer to our clients and fostering greater brand loyalty. With this revamping of our corporate image, Suramericana has consolidated its position as a leading, reliable brand with a much more modern, vigorous, clear and familiar slant as it continues to gain greater international scope.
The Company registered with the ADR level 1 program in the United States, and its shares began to trade on the OTC market here under the GIVSY symbol. Bank of New York Mellon was appointed the depository bank in the US.
In 1999, Suramericana de Inversiones (or Grupo de Inversiones Suramericana as it is known today) consolidated its subsidiaries Suramericana de Seguros, Suramericana de Seguros de Vida, Suramericana de Capitalización, Susalud (now EPS Sura) and Suratep (now ARP Sura), in one single subholding company called INVERSURA (now Suramericana), dedicated to the Group´s insurance and social security arm.
In December 1997, Suramericana de Seguros was restructured by spinning off its insurance arm. This gave rise to a new investment company Suramericana de Inversiones S.A., SURAMERICANA (today known as Grupo de Inversiones Suramericana), which became the Group´s parent company.
Given the substantial growth that the Colombian economy underwent in the early 90s and the reforms made to the country´s Social Security system, Suramericana de Seguros created three subsidiaries, Suratep (now known as ARP Sura,) its Workers´Compensation firm, Susalud (now known as EPS Sura) its healthcare insurance firm and Protección, its pension and severance management firm.
In the 70s, various Antioquenian companies, including Suramericana de Seguros, Cementos Argos and Compañía Nacional de Chocolates, embarked on a series of share swaps to create a cross-holding structure so as to protect the region´s industry from hostile takeovers on the part economic groups from other parts of the country.
This was the year when our corporate history began with the founding of Suramericana de Seguros S.A.. Over the years, this Company created new lines of business and acquired other important Colombian companies as part of its portfolio of investments. One year later, its share was listed on the Colombian stock exchange.