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Our People

Manulife’s strong leadership team is composed of men and women who are experts in their fields.  Our leaders are committed to provide you the highest level of professionalism to ensure that your best interest is served.

Sachin Shah

Chairman of the Board

Sachin N. Shah (53) was appointed General Manager, Emerging Markets, Asia in August 2020. He is a member of Manulife’s Asia Executive Committee and Global Leadership Team

Sachin is responsible for driving the development of the Company’s operations in Southeast and South Asia – namely Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines and Vietnam. The General Managers of these markets report to him. He is based in Singapore.

Sachin has vast industry experience, principally in Asia and the United States. He joined Manulife from AIG, where he was CEO, Asia Pacific General Insurance. He previously held a variety of senior leadership roles across a 20-year tenure at MetLife, most recently as Chairman, President and CEO, MetLife Japan. Sachin also served as President of the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan.

He has a Masters in Finance and Technology from Stevens Institute of Technology.

Richard Bates

Executive Director

Richard Bates is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Manulife Philippines. He is also a member of the board of the company. Richard assumed office on August 5, 2019. 

Richard is responsible for the overall strategy and development of Manulife’s business in the Philippines. His remit is to ensure that the company is focused on Manulife’s mission to make customers’ decisions easier and lives better.

Richard is a finance industry veteran, who has a strong background in advancing insurance penetration in emerging markets in Asia. Prior to joining Manulife, he served as CEO of a multinational insurance firm in Cambodia, where he spearheaded the company’s market entry and launched its multi-channel operations. Prior to this posting, Richard was responsible for the Asia operations of a private equity fund focused on investing and incubating insurance start-ups. He also previously led a multinational consulting firm’s deal strategy unit in Hong Kong and its financial services line of business across Asia. Beyond his work in insurance and finance, Richard has also been involved in a charity that supports adults with learning disabilities in Hong Kong.

Richard holds a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) degree in Business Studies from the University of Portsmouth in England.

Matthew Lawrence

Non-Executive Director

Matthew Edward Lawrence (43) serves as a non-executive director of Manulife Philippines, Manulife Financial Plans, Inc., and Manulife China Bank Life Assurance Corp. He was first elected as director on 01 October 2019. He also serves as a member of the Company's Audit Committee, Nomination and Remuneration Committee, and Related Party Transactions Committee. 

Matt joined Manulife as Regional Controller, Asia, on 30 June 2019. In this role, he is responsible for the Asia regional finance team, overseeing financial planning & analysis, management reporting, expense management and accounting policy.

Matt has over 20 years of experience in the insurance industry, holding leadership positions in both the corporate and professional services fields that span across North America, Europe and Asia. Prior to joining Manulife, he worked at Prudential where he held a series of progressive roles; most recently as Finance Director of Prudential Assurance Company Singapore, where he was responsible for strategic planning and analysis, financial reporting, finance operations, and finance innovation. Prior to his time with Prudential, he spent many years at KPMG and has experience that covers accounting advisory, audit, and transaction services.

A Chartered Accountant and Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, Matt holds a Bachelor of Science in Economics from London School of Economics and Political Science. He speaks frequently at industry events on the subject of accounting change for insurance, most recently speaking at events in Singapore, Hong Kong and South Korea.

Anthony Buchanan

Non-Executive Director

Anthony Buchanan (39) serves as a non-executive director of Manulife Philippines and Manulife Financial Plans, Inc., having been first elected as such on 01 January 2020. 

Anthony is the Head of Operations and IT Performance of Manulife Asia. He is likewise a member of the board of directors of Manulife IT Development Centre and a board supervisor of Manulife Information and Technology Services Co., Ltd. in Chengdu, China. Prior to joining Manulife, Anthony was the Head of IT and Operations Performance and Planning of QBE Emerging Markets. Prior to that Anthony came from a strategy and IT consulting background working with Capgemini and Ernst & Young.

Anthony is a Mechanical Engineering graduate of Monash University in Victoria, Australia and of Masters of Aeronautical Engineering from the same university.

Janette Peña

Independent Director

Janette L. Pena is an Independent Director and chairs the Audit Committe of the Company and of its affiliates, Manulife Financial Plans, Inc., and Manulife China Bank Life Assurance Corp.

She was first elected as Independent Director of the Company in 2007. She is also the Chair of the Audit Committee of the Company.

Janette is currently engaged in legal consultation and special projects.  She is a director and/or corporate secretary of Central Azucarera de Tarlac, Inc., Chinese International School, Inc., First Lucky Group of Companies, Oak Drive Group of Companies, and the China Oceanis Group of Companies.

Prior to her present roles, Janette was a Senior Partner at Ponce Enrile Reyes Manalastas Law Offices (1985-2003); Director and Corporate Secretary of Pancake House Group of Companies (2000-2014), Bousted Technologies (2004-2013), Corporate Secretary of Salcon Holdings (2003-2009), Del Monte Philippines and Philippine Plaza Holdings (1995-2003).

Janette holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Economics and a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of the Philippines, and Master of Laws from Harvard Law School.

Rhoda Regina Reyes-Rara

Independent Director

Rhoda Regina Rara serves as an Independent Director and chairs the Nomination and Remuneration Committee and Related Party Transaction Committee of the Company.

She was first elected as Independent Director in September 2007. 

Presently, Regina is the Managing Partner of MarksPro Philippines/Law Firm of Reyes Rara & Associates. She is also the Vice President for Internal Affairs of the Intellectual Property Professors & Research Organization of the Philippines, a Professor of Criminal Law at the De La Salle University College of Law, and an accredited lecturer of the Mandatory Continuing Legal Education for members of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines. 

Prior to her present roles, Regina was a Partner at Ponce Enrile Reyes & Manalastas Law Offices (1990-2004), Corporate Secretary of First Asia Realty Development Corp. (1996-2004), and Phil. Global Communications, Inc. (1994 – 1996).

Regina holds Bachelor of Science in Legal Management and Bachelor of Laws degrees from the Ateneo de Manila University.

Conrado Favorito

Independent Director

Conrado Favorito is an Independent Director of Manulife Philippines, Manulife Financial Plans, Inc., and Manulife China Bank Life Assurance Corp. He was first elected as director of the Company in April 2018.

He is currently the Chief Executive Officer-President and Chief Consultant of his company, Mr. Fave Management Training & Consulting Services. He serves as his company’s TQM & ISO 9001 Adviser, Keynote Speaker, Trainer, Author/ Editor and Resource-person. Likewise, he is a consultant/ adviser of Inkwell Publishing Co., Inc., VFP Business Support Services, Inc., Blue Macay Food Manufacturing Group, and the Philippine Advocates for Consultants & Trainers. He is also an accredited partner/ speaker/ trainer of MSS Business Solutions, Ariva Academy, South East Asia Speakers & Trainers Bureau, SMESoft, AIB Training & Events, Thought Leaders Philippines Speakers Bureau, and Synerquest Management Consultancy Services, Inc.

Conrad holds a Pre-Divinity/Philosophy degree from the Ateneo de Manila University and a Master in Business Management degree from the Asian Institute of Management.