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Bullivant says big life firms hindering Omo

Annuity Direct chief executive Bob Bullivant has hit out at the Association of British Insurers and its members for claiming IFAs will not deal with smaller pension pots, suggesting it is a ploy to hold on to the business.

Ex-Chartered Insurance Institute deputy director general Bullivant says big life companies are hindering the progress of the Omo by dragging their feet with their technology propositions.

He says: “This is nothing short of a national scandal. Life companies are still profiting at the expense of the pensioner.

“I do not think the IFA market has yet been given a chance to have a go at taking on millions of smaller pension pots. This for me is the ABI and its members trying to hold on to the small business and saying that IFAs are not interested.”

Bullivant argues that many IFAs will be able to make small pension pot business pay by using technology to make the process more efficient and by other business referrals that might result from advising these clients. He says: “I do not know if the ABI are the biggest hurdle against the Omo but I do know that turkeys do not vote for Christmas.”

An ABI spokesman says its members are not obstructing the Omo but argues that it may sometimes be best for some people to stay with their pension provider when they annuitise.

He says: “The ABI and our members want to make sure that people are aware of the Omo and we have all taken a lot of steps to improve communication with people at retirement, making them more aware of their opt-ions. We believe that this process is working.”

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