Aegon to pull out of UK group risk

Aegon is pulling out of the UK group risk market.

The firm will close its group life, group income protection and group critical illness propositions to new business as of today.

The move is part of a group-wide strategy to reallocate capital to business areas with higher growth and return prospects, such as pensions, individual protection, investments and annuities.

Aegon admits it has “sub-scale in-force business” in these markets with “limited prospects” to achieve sufficient economies of scale.

Group risk accounted for less than 2 per cent of total profits in 2008 on an APE basis.

It says the market for these products is generally mature and dominated by a few large providers.

Aegon expects the move to free up almost £48m of capital over the next three years.

The firm will be winding down existing business over the coming two years and will give advisers support while they rebroke contracts with other providers.

An Aegon spokeswoman says: “We have decided to move our focus away from the group risk market.

“The reason behind this is that our global strategy is to focus on markets where we have much better growth potential and opportunities to gain market presence.”

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