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Manulife and World Economic Forum Launch the Prospering in Longevity Challenge to Drive Health and Financial Resiliency

Multi-year partnership taking steps to help shape the future and funding of human longevity innovation

TORONTO, June 17, 2024 /CNW/ - Manulife and the World Economic Forum ("the Forum"), today announced the launch of the Prospering in Longevity Challenge, through UpLink, the Forum's open innovation platform. Earlier this year, a multi-year partnership between Manulife and Uplink was announced at the Forum's Annual Meeting in Davos and the Prospering in Longevity Challenge is the first of three innovation challenges designed to help shape the future of, and investment in, longevity innovation.

Manulife Logo (CNW Group/Manulife Financial Corporation)
Manulife Logo (CNW Group/Manulife Financial Corporation)

Together, Manulife and the Forum invite global start-ups with innovative preventative healthcare and financial well-being solutions, and those committed to enabling people of all generations to thrive while enjoying a financially resilient and fulfilling long life, to participate in the challenge. Applicants can begin applying today through July 22, 2024. Full project details, including eligibility criteria and timelines, can be found on the challenge page here.

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"By 2050, the global population over 65 is expected to double to 1.6 billion, bringing significant health and wealth challenges for our planet," said Sarah Chapman, Global Chief Sustainability Officer for Manulife. "We are partnering with the World Economic Forum and UpLink because of our shared sense of urgency to find inclusive and accessible solutions to help people worldwide live longer, healthier, and better lives."

While people are living longer than in previous generations, it does not always equate to improved health span. On average, people spend about 50 percent of their lives in less than good health, including 12 percent in poor health1.

As the population ages, factors like financial resilience and literacy, healthy ageing, generational skill-building, social connection, and longevity inequalities across gender, race and class will be critical in ensuring a more sustainable, healthier future – and we must act with urgency.

The themes for the first Longevity Challenge are as follows:

  1. Strengthening financial resilience across longer lives, which will create solutions that democratize access to tools that increase financial resilience, e.g. empowering better financial decisions, capacity to save, behavioral focused financial apps.

  2. Embracing a preventative approach to healthcare, which will aim to surface solutions aimed to improve physical and mental health with a preventative approach to healthcare, e.g. early risk factor detection and intervention, lifestyle trackers, access to virtual medical care.

"Innovation is key to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, and by partnering with Manulife, we are committed to sourcing and scaling innovative solutions that strengthen financial resilience across longer lives and embrace a preventative approach to healthcare," said John Dutton, Head of UpLink, World Economic Forum. "This collaboration will democratize access to tools that increase financial resilience and surface solutions aimed at improving physical and mental health."

This multi-year partnership builds upon Manulife's continued partnership with WEF's UpLink to run innovation challenges to spur nature-based solutions to climate change across two key areas in 2023. The first focused on sourcing innovative solutions across the entire sustainable forestry value chain, while the second surfaced innovations aimed at improving the connection between planetary and human health. In total, 21 ecopreneurial start-ups providing innovative and scalable models for sustainable forest management and more were selected as challenge winners. More information about the program can be found here.

To learn more about Manulife's Impact Agenda, and to track progress against its goals, visit manulife.com/impact.

About Manulife 

Manulife Financial Corporation is a leading international financial services provider, helping people make their decisions easier and lives better. With our global headquarters in Toronto, Canada, we provide financial advice and insurance, operating as Manulife across Canada, Asia, and Europe, and primarily as John Hancock in the United States. Through Manulife Investment Management, the global brand for our Global Wealth and Asset Management segment, we serve individuals, institutions, and retirement plan members worldwide. At the end of 2023, we had more than 38,000 employees, over 98,000 agents, and thousands of distribution partners, serving over 35 million customers. We trade as 'MFC' on the Toronto, New York, and the Philippine stock exchanges, and under '945' in Hong Kong.

Not all offerings are available in all jurisdictions. For additional information, please visit manulife.com.

About UpLink

UpLink is the open innovation platform of the World Economic Forum, designed to unlock an 'entrepreneur revolution' for people and planet by supporting start-ups with innovative solutions for the world's most pressing issues, as outlined by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Launched at the World Economic Forum's 2020 Annual Meeting in Davos in partnership with Deloitte and Salesforce, UpLink builds bridges between entrepreneurs and the investors, experts and partners who can help scale their ventures. UpLink crowdsources new innovations through a competition framework known as innovation challenges. UpLink has now run more than 43 challenges and identified over 350 entrepreneurs with innovative solutions across critical SDG areas including health, food, freshwater, ocean, plastics, education, climate and more. For more information, visit https://uplink.weforum.org.

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SOURCE Manulife Financial Corporation

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