THE NETHERLANDS- The €50bn pension fund for healthcare and social workers PGGM has announced it is launching a joint venture with Delta Lloyd offering financial services and products to employers and employees in the healthcare and social work sectors.

Careon Advies, as the venture will be known, will offer savings products, life and general insurance and mortgages. New legislation introduced at the beginning of the year prohibiting pension funds from selling insurance products under their own brand name led PGGM to launch Careon.

But once Careon Advies launches during the second quarter of this year, Delta Lloyd will take a 49% share and PGGM maintains a majority shareholding of 51%. The venture is solely a marketing and sales project, something that the legislation allows pension funds to maintain a majority shareholding in.

However, it specifies that pension funds are to hold no more that a 30% in any outfit selling insurance products directly. “the new law does not allow us to operate insurance companies,” says PGGM spokesman Alfred Kool. Consequently PGGM says it will had over 71% of Careon’s insurance activities to Delta Lloyd, leaving it within the 30% threshold.