EUROPE – Dutch pension group Mn Services is considering expanding out of its home market – possibly into the UK and elsewhere in Europe.
Chairman Ruud Hagendijk explained to IPE in an interview that the domestic market was starting to become too small – and that there will be consolidation.
“It’s a consolidating market,” he said. “Only big players will survive.” Referring to the UK, he said: “We are looking over there.” He mentioned that Mn – which has €27bn in assets – is in talks with a UK pension fund, which he declined to name.
The domestic Dutch market would have a “different landscape” in three to four years. “In the Netherlands the market is divided; if you win a client a third party loses one," Hagendijk said.
He also saw opportunities in Eastern Europe. “There’s economic potential in those countries,” he said.
Hagendijk’s colleague, new interim commercial head Pieter Kiveron, agreed: “You have to look beyond the borders of the Netherlands.” He added that the European Union was “an important driver in our business. It’s underestimated”.
“France, Italy and Germany could be areas for asset management. Other possibilities are enterprises who have their base in the Netherlands."
Kiveron is an insurance industry executive who formerly worked at Winterthur. He suggested the new European directive on occupational pension funds gives Mn “room to move”.
ABP and PGGM, he said, are already “looking around in Europe” – although it would be difficult to export the Dutch pensions model.
“But our risk thinking is something that other countries can use,” Kiveron added.
Mn – which is solely owned by the PMT pension fund - has had several senior executives leave recently. PMT managers stressed this was not a problem for them.