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​Denmark's JØP gets member backing for merger with DIP

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Members of JØP, the Danish pension fund for lawyers and economists, voted overwhelmingly in favour of the fund’s management-backed proposal to merge with Danish engineers’ fund DIP at its annual general meeting (AGM) on Wednesday.

Results announced at the meeting at Copenhagen’s Scandic Hotel showed 2,371 votes in favour and just 46 against the fund’s proposal.

DIP’s members will vote on whether they want to proceed with the merger at the pension fund’s AGM next week, on 29 April.

Both funds, which have cooperated closely via their P+ joint administration company since 2015, have recently published comments on their websites from Jesper Rangvid, pension expert and professor at Copenhagen Business School, explaining the benefits of a merger for smaller pension funds.

He said: “In large organisations, you can typically save money on the administration without compromising on the service. So it is an advantage to be bigger because you can save money.

“Not overall, but per member, because you have more members to share the expenses. And that’s what matters to the members because it gives more money to their pension,” he added.

Rangvid said that there were more than 30 member-owned pension funds in Denmark in 2002, but that now there were less than half that number, showing the extent to which the sector had consolidated over recent years.

JØP and DIP first decided to merge their investment operations back in 2013, after sharing an office building for many years. They merged their administration in 2015 and announced their plans for a full merger in 2017.

With JØP consisting of around 67,000 members and DIP around 29,000, the merged fund would have just under 100,000 customers in total.

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