USS signposts members to LifeSight for drawdown services

The Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) trustee has decided to signpost its members to LifeSight for drawdown provision.

USS members who decide that they want to access their benefits through drawdown will be able to directly transfer their funds into a LifeSight drawdown account.

Both the USS and LifeSight are classified as defined contribution (DC) master trusts, meaning that the decision to direct USS members to LifeSight is thought to be the first time that a UK master trust has appointed another master trust to provide services to its members.

“As the largest private pension scheme by assets under management in the country we are always looking for ways to improve the experience and services available to our members,” commented USS chief pensions officer, Helen McEwan.

“Signposting members to a drawdown provision as part of a balanced range of retirement options is an important part of the USS retirement experience.

“We have an in-house team who conducted a thorough review of the master trust market and we were very impressed with LifeSight, from the transparency and access provided by the management team to the independent governance provided by its trustee board.

“Its investment operations, its commitment to ESG and the online experience and tools available to members were particular strengths that we identified.”

The USS currently has more than 470,000 members and assets under management of over £80bn, with around 90,000 members with DC savings equating to £1.6bn of assets under management.

“We are so proud that USS is signposting members to LifeSight’s drawdown services,” said LifeSight managing director, Fiona Matthews.

“There are 38 master trusts in the UK and when one decides to appoint another to provide member services it shows how this market is evolving and maturing.

“The USS trustee was very thorough in its due diligence and, once again, LifeSight’s independent trustee board and market leading member experience was a differentiating factor in this competitive market.”

LifeSight trustee board chair, Jane Platt, added: “We’ve worked closely with the USS team to make sure that they are fully satisfied that LifeSight can provide a high-quality member experience with thorough independent governance.

“The LifeSight trustees are very pleased to welcome USS members to our drawdown service.”

LifeSight has around 245,000 members and £12bn of assets under management.

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