We believe people deserve better than a one-size-fits-all solution
That’s why we take a collaborative approach to retirement savings that’s driven by personalization, simplification and exceptional service. And we’re committed to constantly improving this approach — by holding ourselves accountable and leading the way through innovation — so we can deliver the results our clients deserve.
The genesis of Empower dates back to 1891, when our parent company was founded as an insurance provider on the Canadian prairie. After more than a century of expansion and a profound evolution of service offerings, the modern iteration of Empower was launched in 2014, when the retirement businesses of Great-West Financial and Putnam Investments came together to form an integrated workplace retirement savings company.
Empower is now the second-largest retirement plan provider1 in the United States, with more than 17 million participants2, and with the acquisition of the digital first wealth management platform Personal Capital in 2020, Empower Retirement is even better equipped to help millions save for the future they imagine.
Yet our founding mission remains unchanged. We believe helping people pursue a better future means giving them the tools and resources to take control of their finances. That's why we're called Empower.
110+ years serving customers
Bringing together three organizations, Edmund F. Murphy III named to head Empower. Empower business becomes the nation’s second-largest retirement services provider with more than 7 million plan participants.
Robert L. Reynolds named CEO of GWL&A, leading both Great-West Financial® and Empower.
The company introduces a financial literacy grant initiative to help promote financial education among students in Colorado schools.
Franklin Templeton Investments transitions its 401(k) recordkeeping business to Empower.
Empower acquires a block of 401(k) and defined benefit plan businesses from Metropolitan Life Insurance Company and its affiliates as well as General American Life Insurance Company and New England Life Insurance Company. It also acquires U.S. Bank’s bundled, full-service defined contribution business.
Empower acquires 401(k) administration subsidiary EMJAY Corp. and the group retirement business of Federated Insurance Companies.
GWL&A establishes Financial Administrative Services Corporation (renamed FASCore, LLC), as a wholly owned subsidiary to provide recordkeeping and administrative services for retirement plans offered by other financial institutions.
The Great-West Life Assurance Company (Great-West Life) completes the transfer of its U.S. operations to U.S. subsidiary GWL&A. GWL&A’s retirement business, now known as Empower, introduces a proprietary retirement plan recordkeeping platform.
The company begins offering services to 401(k) defined contribution plans for private employers.
Outgrowing its downtown Denver location, the company moves its U.S. headquarters to its current campus in Greenwood Village, Colorado.
The formal process of splitting U.S. and Canadian operations begins. The company builds a new office complex in downtown Denver to house its U.S. headquarters.
The company begins offering services to Section 457 deferred compensation plans for public sector employees in the U.S.
The company begins offering services to Section 403(b) retirement savings plans for nonprofit organizations. U.S. customers account for half of Great-West Life’s annual sales.
Empower begins offering services to tax-advantaged retirement savings plans for U.S. employers under Internal Revenue Code Section 401(a).
The company, now known as GWL&A, is incorporated in Kansas as The National Interment Association.
Great-West Life opens its first U.S. sales office in Fargo, North Dakota.
The Great-West Life Assurance Company (Great-West Life) is incorporated in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
1 Pension & Investments Defined Contribution Survey Ranking as of April 2020.
2 As of April 1, 2022. Information refers to all retirement business of Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company (GWLA) and its subsidiaries, including Empower Retirement, LLC; Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company of New York (GWLANY); and Prudential Retirement Insurance & Annuity Company (PRIAC), marketed under the Empower brand.