LCP advises
on bulk annuity between Aviva and the St Paul’s Cathedral pension scheme

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LCP has advised on a c£18m bulk purchase annuity transaction between Aviva and the St Paul’s Cathedral Pension and Life Assurance Scheme. The transaction was completed through LCP’s Streamlined Service and has led to Aviva securing the benefits for all members of the scheme. 

The buy-in was completed without any additional contribution from St Paul’s Cathedral, the sponsoring employer of the scheme.   

The transaction shows how smaller schemes that are well prepared can use LCP’s Streamlined Service to achieve a competitive and attractive price. The buy-in was executed within three weeks of selecting the preferred insurer, demonstrating how the efficient process reduces exposure to market risks and provides certainty to both trustees and insurers. 

LCP also provided due diligence for the Trustee on the insurer’s Responsible Investment approach, which was an important consideration for the scheme. The Trustees were also advised by Stephenson Harwood and Options Pensions. 

Tim Gilbert, Partner at LCP who led the transaction, said: “We are delighted to have helped advise on this excellent outcome for members of the scheme. This demonstrates the competitive insurer engagement and successful outcomes schemes can achieve in the current busy market if they are well prepared and approach the market using our streamlined buy-in and buy-out process.” 

Giles Orton, Chair of Trustees, said: “This is a very important step to reduce risk within the scheme and to improve the security of members’ benefits. It has been the longstanding aim of the Trustee to achieve this, and it has now been possible partly due to the financial support provided by the Cathedral over many years and the recent improvements in the Scheme assets. The Trustees are grateful for the support of all our advisers to help us efficiently execute a transaction and take advantage of attractive market conditions.” 

Joanne Day, Director of Corporate Resources at St Paul’s Cathedral, added: “The Cathedral is fully supportive of this transaction and worked closely with the Trustee throughout the process. This enhances the security of members’ benefits and frees up our assets to better support our mission. The advice from LCP enabled us to consider Aviva, who provided a competitive quotation and aligned with our Responsible Investment principles”. 

Toby Holmes, Senior Deal Manager at Aviva, said: “We are pleased to have been selected to secure member benefits for the St Paul’s Cathedral pension scheme. Responsible Investment principles are a key factor for both the Trustees and Aviva, so we’re pleased to be working with them to deliver long-term, sustainable outcomes for members. This transaction also demonstrates that well-prepared schemes, irrespective of size, can secure attractive terms in today’s busy market.”