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PIC seals second deal with Cookson

22 January 2013

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Pension Insurance Corporation (PIC), a specialist insurer, has signed a second bulk annuity policy with the Cookson Group Pension Plan, now sponsored by metals company Vesuvius following the recent demerger of Cookson Group.

The insurance policy covers up to £30m of liabilities and follows the £320m pensioner buy-in announced in July 2012.

Under the agreement, plan members who retire in each of the next three years will have their pensions insured on agreed terms.

Allan Course, chairman of the scheme's trustees, said: "We were very pleased with the flexibility and innovation that PIC showed in the completion of the initial pension insurance buy-in."

The first group of members, covering retirees between July 2012 and December 2013, will be insured in 2014 based on December 2012 market rates.

He added: "We are delighted to have locked in pricing for the first tranche of retirees. This removes volatility from the plan and allows us to develop our future strategy with confidence."

Jay Shah, PIC co-head of business orientation, said that the move has demonstrated that the trustee is "forward thinking and proactive" when managing its pension plan risk.

"The approach adopted here reflects the trend towards well planned de-risking programmes. Most schemes are now working towards lower risk and insurance is playing an increasing role in this," said Aon Hewitt partner Paul Belok, whose organisation provided advice to the trustee.

First published 22.01.2013