Welplan Pensions has today announced that the Smart Pension Master Trust has been confirmed as its default receiving scheme following the decision in 2019 to close Welplan Pensions.
The move follows a strategic review by Welplan Pensions’ Scheme Funder, Welplan Ltd, and its decision not to seek master trust authorisation.
The Trustee’s decision will see the transfer of existing employers and members from Welplan Pensions into the Smart Pension Master Trust.
Welplan Pensions currently has approximately 1,800 participating employers and 55,000 individual members with aggregate funds under management of over £200m.
Dianne Day, Chair of Trustee of Welplan Pensions said:
“Following the strategic decision to close Welplan Pensions our priority has been finding the right default receiving scheme for Scheme members. We looked for a provider that shared our aims and values, in terms of delivering for members and employers. As well as their technology, we were particularly impressed with the strong trustee governance and value for money that the Smart Pension Master Trust will provide our members.
“We are pleased to say that The Pensions Regulator has approved our Implementation Strategy and we will continue to work very closely with the team at Smart to make the transition as seamless as possible for our employers and members.”
Andrew Evans, CEO and co-founder of Smart, said:
“We are delighted that the Trustee of Welplan has chosen Smart Pension to take on the members and employers of the Welplan Master Trust, which follows on from our other successful Master Trust mergers. This was an important decision for the Trustee and we are pleased that Welplan value our governance and value for money. We are impressed with Welplan’s approach to excellence in client service and care, which we will continue going forward. This is great news all round, particularly for the members and employers who will have access to our world-class technology.”
Welplan Pensions has now written to all employers to inform them of the move and to reassure them that Welplan Pensions will continue to be expertly managed until the transfer is complete. The transition of future contributions is now expected in the next few months and the transfer of assets is planned to take place later in the year.
This is the latest acquisition for Smart Pension following the transfer of more than 20,000 members from the £20m Corpad Master Trust, and 6,500 members from the £12.5m Lighthouse sponsored Corporate Pensions Trust in 2019.
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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