The trustee of House of Fraser’s Beatties & Jenners Pension Scheme has insured some £600m (€698m) of liabilities via a buyout with the Pension Insurance Corporation (PIC).

The transaction covers 3,850 deferred members and 5,050 pensioners.

In August 2018 the pension scheme entered Pension Protection Fund (PPF) assessment after the UK high street chain House of Fraser went into administration.

The pension scheme said the terms it had negotiated for the buyout meant that members whose pensions have been reduced as a result of the insolvency are expected to get an uplift to their pension.

“We are pleased to have been able to secure this buyout with PIC, which means members will receive higher benefits than they would have under the PPF,” said Steve Sargent, chair of the scheme.

“The buyout will also provide thousands of members with certainty and long-term security for their benefits. We see this as a very successful outcome following the challenges caused by the insolvency, and would like to thank PIC and our advisors who helped us achieve this result.”

LCP was lead adviser on the transaction. CMS provided legal advice to the trustee on the transaction and PIC was advised by Herbert Smith Freehills.

Royal Mail DC scheme selects ‘financial wellness’ provider

The defined contribution (DC) scheme of Royal Mail (RMDCP) has chosen Destination Retirement from HUB Financial Solutions as a service to support scheme members making key financial choices in the run-up to retirement and beyond.

The service makes skilled individuals available online or by phone to provide RMDCP members with personal recommendations on how to get the maximum benefit from their pension savings as well as other savings and investments.

“As trustees we want to make sure our pension scheme members get the help and professional advice they need to achieve good outcomes and this service aims to do just that,” said Venetia Trayhurn, chair of trustees, RMDCP.

“With 90,000 members in our defined contribution scheme, over 15,000 of whom are aged 55 or older, helping our members through the transition to retirement is a key priority,” she said.

“Financial advice has been beyond reach of most people until now. Destination Retirement is a low cost, but quality solution we are making available to our members. It allows members to proceed at their own pace and offers a bespoke financial plan to reflect individual circumstances,” she added.

Assets in RMDCP, which is the current automatic enrolment vehicle for Royal Mail Group, were in excess of £1.3bn as at 31 March. The company is working on setting up a collective DC scheme, which would be a first in the UK

Cleveland Potash appoints WTW’s OneDB, Scottish Leather Group selects Isio

The Cleveland Potash defined benefit (DB) pension schemes have appointed WTW’s OneDB consolidated pension service to provide combined actuarial, fiduciary management and administrative services following competitive tender processes.

Headquartered in North Yorkshire and part of the ICL Group, Cleveland Potash has two DB pension schemes with a total of £285m in assets covering around 1,500 members.

Separately, Isio has been appointed as scheme actuary, investment adviser and administrator to the Scottish Leather Group Pension Schemes following a thorough selection process.

The trustees decided to review the existing provider, in place for a number of years, to ensure they had the optimal partner and approach for the next stage on the schemes’ journey, it was announced.

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