Now Pensions’ trustee chair steps down

The chair of the trustee board at Now Pensions, Nigel Waterson, has announced that he is standing down after more than seven years in the position.

Joanne Segars, who was appointed to the trustee board in 2017, will take over the role on an interim basis whilst the board decides on how to proceed.

In January, Now Pensions director of policy, Adrian Boulding, was forced to defend his scheme's returns after Conservative MP for Amber Valley, Nigel Mills, singled out the provider.

Due to Waterson’s announcement and the recent deal which saw the Cardano Group agreeing to acquire Now Pensions, The Pensions Regulator (TPR) has granted Now Pensions a six week application extension for its master trust authorisation.

In light of the extension, Joanne Segars commented: “We are grateful to TPR for the extension to our application deadline while we make the necessary amendments in light of the Cardano acquisition and Nigel’s decision to step down from the trustee board and we look forward to submitting our application shortly.”

In February, the provider was forced by TPR to overhaul its administration system, after it emerged that the master trust had failed to collect an estimated £18m in pension contributions.

Evidence collected by the regulator found “serious and persistent” administrative failings at Now Pensions, which left one in three members pension contributions unpaid, affecting over 265,000 people.

Last week, PensionsBee accused Now Pensions of “attempting to pull the wool” over the government’s eyes in regards to its charging structure.

Commenting on his announcement, Waterson said: “I am proud of what we have achieved at Now Pensions.

“When I joined, we had no members and no funds. Today, we are the third largest master trust and a major player in the wider pensions sector.

“With the historic administrative issues largely resolved, we are well placed for authorisation, and for the Cardano Group to acquire the business following authorisation. This feels like a natural point to step down.”

Now Pensions non-executive chairman, John Rowland added: “Nigel has been with Now Pensions from the outset and has made a huge contribution, helping to ensure that we keep members at the heart of everything we do.

“We will miss his wisdom, wit and insight and wish him the very best for the future.”

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