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History 

TOWER’s origins go back to 1869 when the Government Life Insurance Office (Government Life) was created in New Zealand, with its initial capital provided by the New Zealand government. Government Life became a separate statutory body with the passing of the Government Life Insurance Act in 1953. It was renamed TOWER Corporation in 1987 and in 1990 ownership was conferred to its policyholders with the passing of the TOWER Corporation Act, allowing TOWER to be owned as a mutual association.

 

To remove growth constraints resulting from difficulties in accessing new capital under the mutual association structure, TOWER undertook a demutualisation process in 1999 with the approval of its policyholders and the High Court. The effect of this was to convert TOWER’s legal status to a shareholder owned company. Subsequent to the demutualisation, TOWER Limited undertook a listing on the Australian and New Zealand stock exchanges in September 1999. In November 2006 TOWER's New Zealand and Australian businesses were separated with the approval of its shareholders and the High Court. In November 2012 TOWER sold its health insurance business.

Corporate actions

1989 Acquired National Insurance and Trustees Executors in New Zealand 
1990 Acquired Adriatic Insurance in Australia
1993 Acquired Friends Provident (Australia)
1996 Acquired Austrust in Australia
1999 Acquired FAI Life in Australia
2000 Acquired Bridges Financial Services Group in Australia
          Acquired AXA Health New Zealand
2003 Sold Trustees Executors
2005 Spin-off of Australian Wealth Management (Bridges & TOWER Trust Aust.)
2006 Acquired PreSure in Australia
          Separation of TOWER's New Zealand and Australian businesses
2009 TOWER opens Dunedin branch
2010 TOWER opens Christchurch branch
2011 TOWER opens Rotorua branch
2012 TOWER sold TOWER Medical Insurance Limited
          TOWER sold TOWER Managed Funds Limited