McColl's pension schemes to be protected under acquisition

McColl’s pension schemes are to continue to receive support under the terms of Morrisons' acquisition of the retail group.

A spokesperson for the McColl’s Pension Schemes said: “The trustees welcome the announcement that Morrisons will continue to support the schemes following its acquisition of the McColl’s business.

“The trustees will continue to engage with all stakeholders to ensure that members’ benefits are protected following the completion of the transaction.”

Trustees for the schemes recently urged one of the leading bidders, EG Group, to engage with the scheme trustees to help protect member benefits, having also previously emphasised the need for any bidders to respect the pension promises previously made.

The company has two pension schemes, the TM Pension Plan (TMPP) with 915 members and the TM Group Pension Scheme (TMGPS) with 1,170 members, appointed administrators last week.

The TMGPS is fully funded on a statutory ongoing funding basis and does not need any deficit recovery contributions, while the TMPP is expected to be fully funded on the same basis next year, with the the current £1.75m annual deficit recovery contributions then expected to stop.

The TMGPS has a Section 75 deficit of less than £1m, while the TMPP has a Section 75 deficit of £15m.

The news was also welcomed by the Pension Protection Fund (PPF), which commented: “We hope this deal will provide clarity to scheme members after what must have been an unsettling time.

“PPF compensation provides a significant level of protection to the schemes we cover and the McColl’s scheme members can be reassured by our ongoing protection.”

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