Whitbread pension scheme completes £680m buy-in with Standard Life

The Whitbread Group Pension Fund has completed a £680m buy-in with Standard Life, part of Phoenix Group, securing retirement benefits for around 8,000 scheme members.

The transaction is the first bulk purchase annuity deal undertaken by the trustee and is expected to significantly reduce the risks associated with the underlying members’ benefits.

WTW acted as the lead adviser on the transaction, while legal advice was provided by Reed Smith. Whitbread was advised by LCP and Slaughter and May.

Whitbread pension trustees chair, Keith Jones, highlighted the buy-in as a “key stage” in the fund’s de-risking journey, emphasising that it will help to provide "greater certainty" to members about the security of their benefits.

Adding to this, Standard Life senior business development manager, Kieran Mistry, said: “It’s exciting to support the trustee in securing their first buy-in, taking risk off the table in a volatile economic environment.

"We thoroughly enjoyed working closely and collaboratively with the trustee and its advisers to secure this transaction. We look forward to partnering with the fund on its journey.

“For schemes who have not yet reached buyout, pensioner buy-ins continue to offer a fantastic opportunity to lock down risk over time, and form strategic partnerships with insurers along the way.”

WTW UK pensions transactions team director, Louise Nash, added: “The Whitbread Group Pension Fund was able to achieve very compelling pricing by moving quickly to take advantage of attractive market conditions and a highly competitive insurer landscape.

"We were very pleased to help the trustee to secure this transaction with Standard Life, working closely with the WTW scheme actuary and investment advisory teams.

"So far this year market volumes in the bulk annuity and longevity swap markets have been lower than many predicted, but underneath the surface the market is incredibly busy and the second half of the year looks set to see a significant volume of deals complete.”

    Share Story:

Recent Stories

Making pension engagement enjoyable through technology
Laura Blows speaks to Nick Hall, business development director and Chartered Financial Planner at UK-based Wealth Wizards about the opportunities that technology provides for increasing people’s engagement with pensions and increasing their retirement wealth. Please click here for an edited write-up of the video

ESG & DC – creating the right tools
In the latest of our series of Pensions Age video interviews Francesca Fabrizi, Editor in Chief of Pensions Age is joined by Manuela Sperandeo, Head of Sustainable Indexing EMEA, BlackRock and Mark Guirey, Executive Director, Asset Owner and Consultant Coverage - MSCI to discuss some key trends of ESG investing among UK pension funds today. Please click here for an edited write-up of the video

Savings and finance at retirement
Laura Blows is joined by Claire Felgate, Head of Global Consultant Relations, UK, at BlackRock, to discuss savings and finance at retirement. Please click here for an edited write-up of the video

Global sustainable credit
Laura Blows speaks to Royal London Asset Management senior fund manager, Rachid Semaoune, about global sustainable credit
Global equities and transition investing
Pensions Age editor, Laura Blows speaks to Royal London Asset Management equity investment director, Jonathan Price, about transitioning to sustainable investments within global equities

Advertisement Advertisement Advertisement