Cannon started operations in Kenya in 1964 as a branch office of a UK Company then known as International Life Insurance Company (UK).
Business proved so successful that four years later, in 1968, International Life Insurance Company was able to generate sufficient funds to start the development of the then ultramodern International Life House along Mama Ngina Street, Nairobi.
In 1973, international restructuring and corporate changes within the group saw ILI (UK) Ltd being sold to the merchant banking group - Keyser-Ullmann headed by Sir Edward Du Cann and ILl (UK) Ltd changed its name to Cannon Assurance Ltd. The Company continued to operate in Kenya as a Branch office of the UK Company.
It was in 1974 that Cannon activated the locally incorporated Company as a fully-fledged Insurance office and Underwriter and introduced the unique Unit Linked Life Insurance products, which are so popular in the market today. In 1984 Cannon UK fully divested and sold its entire shareholding to local interests.
The new Board of Directors decided to add non-life insurance business also and the Company became a composite insurance Company towards the end of 1984. At the same time, the Company purchased a commercial building along Haile Selassie Avenue with this location being the intended head office. In 1986, after a major extension and refurbishment the project was complete and Cannon House came into being.
The Company moved its head offices there until October 2007 when the company purchased a new building along Mombasa Road and moved its head office. The head office is now based at Mombasa Road - Gateway park - Block D. The Company offers its services through a network of Branches, Agents and Brokers throughout Kenya. The growth in business has been steady. At the time of take-over in 1984, the capital of the Company was KShs. 4,865,000/=. This has been progressively increased and today stands at KShs. 450,000,000/-
The life insurance gross premium income has grown from KShs. 21,000,000/= in 1984 to KShs. 81,361,023/= in 2010.
Many attractive plans for life cover are offered by the Company to suit individual needs. Similarly, growth has occurred in general business. From a very modest beginning in 1985 when the premium income was KShs. 14,000,000/= to KShs. 937,443,015/= in 2010.
The Company writes all classes of General Insurance Business such as Fire, Householders, Personal Accident, Workmen's Compensation and Contractors All Risks. Total gross assets of the Company, as at 31st December 2010 was in excess of KShs. 3,458,812,387/=. The life fund on the same date stood at KShs. 675,136,507/=.
The assets are invested judiciously and in conformity with the Insurance Act. Investments include Government Bonds and Treasury Bills, mortgages, real estate, shares and loans to policyholders to mention but a few. Today the Company is a market leader in Unit Linked Insurance products and continues its tradition of quality service to its clients.
The Company has plans to provide a Unit Linked Pension Scheme. Insurance is a service-oriented industry. The Company has a complement of competent and experienced staff to service the business efficiently. Indeed it does live up to its motto of "CANNON CARES" - caring for the well being of its numerous policy holders.
Cannon Unit Prices have performed well and have more than doubled over a period of time. The Unit Price as at the end of December 2011 was KShs. 781.00 compared to KShs. 359.00 as at the end of 1993