WINNIPEG, Manitoba, March 13, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Company (Wawanesa) today announced the official opening of its new national headquarters in downtown Winnipeg. Purpose-built for Wawanesa at True North Square, the 21-storey, environmentally sustainable headquarters features 360,000 square feet of leading-edge workspace for the company’s 1,300 local employees.

“This building proudly symbolizes Wawanesa’s transformation from small-town roots in rural Manitoba to a leading Canadian mutual insurance company,” said Jeff Goy, Wawanesa’s President and CEO. “Wawanesa Insurance began in 1896 when 20 farmers formed an insurance company to meet their local needs. Today our operations span the country with over 1.6 million members, but our commitment to downtown Winnipeg and the Province of Manitoba has never been stronger.”

Developed by True North Real Estate Development and designed by Architecture49, the new headquarters was built to accommodate Wawanesa’s growing workforce, which doubled in size over the last decade concurrent with the company’s strong financial growth. The new headquarters brings employees from multiple different Manitoba office locations together under one roof. It has been built to leading standards of environmental sustainability and employee wellbeing. The building is on-track to achieve LEED Gold certification, meaning it has been built to meet high standards for energy efficiency, water conservation, and environmental quality, and is on-track to be WELL certified at the Gold level by the end of 2024, reflecting the building’s numerous health and wellness amenities and features.

“We are thrilled to officially welcome Wawanesa to True North Square and see their vision of an innovative, inviting and purpose-built employee home come to life in opening their new national headquarters,” said Jim Ludlow, President of True North Real Estate Development. “Wawanesa has long held tremendous pride in their Manitoba roots and their continued commitment to their employees and to being part of a dynamic downtown Winnipeg core also speaks very loudly through this stunning space.”

Wawanesa’s new headquarters features modern amenities, flexible workspaces, and spaces that support employee health and wellbeing, such as:

  • Workspaces designed for a broad range of work styles, allowing employees to connect in ways that aren’t possible digitally;
  • A floor for large meetings, townhalls, and multi-group functions, offering panoramic views of the prairie skyline;
  • A floor devoted to training and development, with state-of-the-art technology and exhibits of Wawanesa’s rich 127-year history;
  • A café on-site with healthy food options and compostable serving-ware, consistent with the company’s focus on environmental sustainability;
  • A health & wellness floor, with fitness equipment, wellness consultations, and room for exercise classes;
  • A childcare centre, to be opened at a later date, providing convenience for working parents;
  • Connection to the excitement of True North Square, as well as Winnipeg’s skywalk system, offering easy access to the city’s vibrant culture and amenities.

Wawanesa also announced a $500,000 investment in downtown revitalization, with $450,000 over three years to support the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s environmental team, community clean up events, and the planting of seasonal flowers. Wawanesa also made a $50,000 contribution to the Downtown Community Safety Partnership.

“Wawanesa is proud to partner with our community,” Goy added. “Our operations span the country, but Manitoba is our home and always will be.”