J.P. Morgan has made a strategic investment in technology innovator and UK workplace pensions provider, Smart Pension.
The company has taken a minority equity stake in the firm as part of Smart’s new strategic placement funding round, bringing total funds raised to date to c.£50m.
The news comes as Smart, one the UK’s largest providers of workplace pensions, continues to build its stature as a leading player in the UK DC landscape and takes its savings platform technology into fresh global markets.In October last year, Smart announced it had won an international competitive tender to deliver a pensions technology platform for New Ireland Assurance, one of Ireland’s leading life insurance, pensions and investment businesses.
The fast-growing UK-based fintech is now in early-stage conversations with new strategic partners globally.
Andrew Evans, Smart Pension co-founder and CEO, said: “We are delighted to have secured this investment from J.P. Morgan, as it signifies a positive step in our growth and international reach. From the outset our objective has been to put user engagement and experience at the heart of everything we do, utilising technology to build an unrivalled platform. Our journey has just started, the opportunities to disrupt and do things differently in this sector are staggering, and we will be leading the way.”
Anne Lester, Global Head of Retirement Solutions, J.P. Morgan Asset Management, will take a non-executive seat on the Smart board. She said: “We are investing in pensions and savings solutions and technology capabilities to help investors achieve better financial outcomes, reinforcing our commitment to putting clients first in every aspect of our business. Smart Pension has demonstrated how financial technology can have a positive impact by making it easier both for people to save for retirement and for companies to offer pension plans to their employees.”
Will Wynne, Smart Pension co-founder and MD, said: “In October we won our first international competitive tender to build a savings technology platform in Ireland. This gives us an opportunity to demonstrate how our unique proprietary dynamic technology is plugging a huge gap in the workplace savings platform market, and performing on a global scale. We are now in early stage conversations with new strategic partners as the world’s financial institutions grapple with regulatory change and legacy technology.”
Smart Pension is a global savings and investments technology platform provider. Co-founded in 2014 by Andrew Evans, CEO, and Will Wynne, MD, it is one of the UK's largest providers of workplace pensions. Its award-winning master trust is overseen by independent professional trustees. In 2016, Europe’s second largest asset manager Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM) took a minority stake in the digital pension platform, part of a move by LGIM to invest in high-achieving, innovative technology that has a positive impact on the wider economy. In January 2019 J.P. Morgan invested as part of a strategic investment round and in November 2019, Link Group, the leading administrator in the Australian superannuation industry, invested as part of strategic partnership.
In 2019 Smart Pension was named DC Master Trust of the Year, DC Innovation of the Year and Retirement Innovation of the Year in the UK Pensions Awards. It was also named European Pension Fund of the Year 2019 in the European Pension Awards.
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