Scottish Widows acquires Zurich’s workplace pensions business

Scottish Widows, part of Lloyds Banking Group (LBG), has acquired Zurich’s UK workplace pensions and savings business, it has announced.

The deal includes a multi-year, exclusive distribution partnership for Zurich to provide group life protection solutions to certain corporate clients of LBG’s Commercial Banking services Lloyds Banking Group.

Zurich’s business which has £15bn assets under management and around 500,000 customers, will enhance Scottish Widows’ business. It already manages more than £124bn of funds of which £35bn is workplace pensions business.

Commenting, LBG director of insurance and wealth and Scottish Widows chief executive Antonio Lorenzo said: “Today’s announcement is a clear signal of Lloyds Banking Group’s commitment to the financial planning and retirement segment. The acquisition of Zurich Corporate Savings complements Scottish Widows’ growth to date and provides us with an ideal opportunity to accelerate our goal to become a market leader in this important sector for advisers and customers.

“Zurich Corporate Savings is highly regarded and has achieved good growth in assets under administration driven through strong relationships with large-scale corporate clients and their intermediaries. The greater proposition choice created through this acquisition will help us meet adviser and customer demands and ensure we continue to evolve our service proposition so that we are easy to do business with.”

In addition, Zurich CEO Tulsi Naidu described the announcement as a “positive step forward” for the business. He stated that they are simplifying the organisation and focusing on markets where it has strong assets and can best serve its customers and distributors.

“Our UK life and savings strategy is simple – to establish market leading positions in retail wealth, and retail and corporate protection, while growing our new corporate longevity and de-risking business. This new exclusive deal with Lloyds Banking Group broadens our corporate protection distribution footprint. To support our other ambitious growth plans, we are also investing in a new multi-million pound retail protection platform and enhancing the range of products on our retail wealth platform.”

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