MetLife, also known as the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, is known as one of the largest providers of annuities, insurance and various employee benefit programs globally. Their reach is so large that it extends across more than 60 countries; naturally, they serve almost 100 million customers, due to that reach.
The insurance company currently holds leading market positions in many countries, including that of the United States, Latin America, Asia’s Pacific region, Japan as well as the Middle East. They are the largest leading provider of life insurance throughout the entire United States. That pretty much means that practically most people in the United States have a MetLife life insurance policy of some kind.
While MetLife being one of the largest insurance countries in the world is a benefit itself, not everyone may benefit from enrolling in a MetLife insurance policy. Though, as a large insurance and financial services company, MetLife does its best to provide all of their customers with sufficient enough services that will fulfill their financial and insurance related needs.
MetLife also has the distinction of serving 90 of the largest Fortune 500 countries. Such a large company is naturally headquartered in an equally large city, too. MetLife’s headquarters are locked right in New York City, notably in Midtown Manhattan. They do have several executive offices and boardrooms scattered around the city, though they eventually sold most of those properties by 2005.
Advertising and logo
As a large insurance and financial services company, MetLife naturally has a large presence in both the insurance industry and in advertising. While they’re not known for having memorable advertisements, they do provide advertisements and their accompanying campaigns that reach an incredible amount of people.
Though, probably the best known factor about MetLife’s advertisement and promotional materials is their use of Peanuts characters. One of the best known commercial series by MetLife, in fact, features Snoopy in various situations that relate to needing MetLife to step in. MetLife has used Snoopy and other Peanuts characters in their promotional materials, premium items and sales literature since 1985.
The presence of Peanuts characters in their advertisement campaigns has allowed MetLife to gain a larger business presence across the country and around the world. Some of their best known advertisement campaigns with the Peanuts characters include slogans like ‘Get Met. It pays.,’ ‘Have you met life today?’ and ‘Guarantees for the If in Life.’ The company continues to use Peanuts characters in their promotional materials, including their advertisements, to this day.
MetLife also makes various charitable contributions to various organizations and establishments involves in health, civic affairs, culture and education. The MetLife Foundation, founded in 1976, was created to promote their charity-related efforts. By 2010, both MetLife and the MetLife Foundation were able to contributed well over $44.7 million to non-profit organizations, in addition to providing over $480 million in loans and other investments designed for community development.
As for MetLife’s logo, it’s rather simple in design. It’s usually depicted as ‘MetLife’ printed in bold type, usually in blue, though it’s also known to appear in black or white (reversed against the blue). Some versions of the logo are depicted with Peanuts characters like Snoopy beside it.
The History of MetLife
MetLife first formed out of its predecessor company, a company known as the National Union Life and Limb Insurance Company. That company was started in 1863, after a group of businessmen from New York City raised 100 thousand dollars to open the company. They initially provided insurance for Civil War soldiers and sailors who needed insurance for their disabilities that results from wartime wounds, sicknesses and/or accidents.
By March 1868, the company became what we now know as MetLife, founded as the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company. To accommodate their customer base, the company moved its focus to providing life insurance. While the company continued to operate after its opening, it was soon forced to consolidate its services, due to a severe business depression that hit the 1870s.
By the 1900s, MetLife had grew into the largest life insurance provider in the United States. That was thanks to the efforts of MetLife President Joseph F. Knapp, who adapted industrial insurance programs from Great Britain to the United States in 1879. By the next year, MetLife experienced incredible growth, earning as much as $1 million in revenue from about a quarter million insurance policies.
MetLife’s former headquarters, was commissioned for construction in 1907. Following its construction, it was actually the world’s tallest building until the year 1913. In 1915, MetLife completed their mutualization process, which changed the company from a stock life insurance company that was owned by individuals into a mutual company that operated without any external shareholders. That provided policyholders benefits that they wouldn’t have gotten had they employed shareholders.
The company soon experience more growth into the 1930s, having by then insured every ‘fifth woman, man, and child’ within Canada and the United States. They also, at the time, provided financing for constructing the famous New York buildings: the Empire State Building (1929) and the Rockefeller Center (1931).
By the era of the postwar, MetLife continued expanding its presence into many markets across the United States and Canada. They even focused on reworking their career agency system, ensuring that the system instead provided services for all markets. Around 1979, they were able to segment their operations into 4 primary businesses: their group insurance business, life insurance business, investments business and pensions business.
In 1981, MetLife purchased what eventually became the MetLife Building; the building was purchased for about $400 million from a collective that include the Pan American World Airways.
Services at MetLife
As mentioned, MetLife is currently the largest provider of life insurance in the United States. It’s also the largest life insurer in Mexico and also serves as the second-largest foreign provider of any type of insurance in Japan.
Since MetLife is best known for their life insurance products, they naturally provide a wide selection of life insurance products for customers, a selection that comprises several term life insurance and several different permanent life insurance plans.
Their permanent life insurance includes universal life, whole life, and variable universal life insurance coverage. In addition, MetLife also provides a group life insurance policy, though that’s primarily offered through employers. That particular insurance policy includes term life, universal life, group variable universal life insurance and group universal life.
They also provide dental insurance plans for retirees, individuals, families and employees, in addition to providing dental plan administration. MetLife also provides services related to dental education, including their continuing education program for health care professionals under prominent dental organizations like the American Dental Association.
MetLife’s disability insurance products provides coverage for employees and other associates who receive the insurance through the employer they work for. Like similar insurance plans, customers under MetLife’s disability insurance plan receive coverage in the case of their disability impeding their ability to work.
Other insurance policies and services at MetLife include their auto insurance, life insurance and annuities. In fact, MetLife is one of the biggest providers of annuities in the entire world, offering deferred annuities, fixed annuities, immediate annuities, and variable annuities.