Sanlam was founded in 1918 originally as a life insurance company, but over the years the company has evolved to become a diversified financial services business with a local and international footprint. The group provides individual and institutional clients with financial solutions across all market segments, through its business clusters, namely Sanlam Investments; Sanlam Emerging Markets; Sanlam Corporate; Sanlam Personal Finance and Santam.

Sanlam currently employs approximately 18 000 staff members, services over 10 million clients and is listed on the JSE (Johannesburg Stock Exchange) as well as on the NSE (Namibian Stock Exchange).

The group operates throughout Africa (including South Africa; Swaziland; Zambia; Botswana; Namibia; Nigeria; Tanzania; Mozambique; Uganda; Kenya; Malawi; Ghana and Rwanda), as well as in the United Kingdom, Malaysia, India, with additional business interests in Australia, the USA and Philippines.