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Merger for friendlies

The Schoolteachers Friendly Society is to merge with the Oddfellows Society after winning overwhelming backing from members.

The agreement, which is subject to FSA approval, will see the combined organisations’ membership rise to over 200,000, with assets under management of £400m.

Schoolteachers Friendly Society will continue to operate from its current office in Liverpool and its assets and liabilities will be ringfenced within Oddfellows.

Oddfellows was founded in 1810 to encompass the “odd” skills groups which did not have a professional mutual help organisation of their own.

The deal comes on the back of European Solvency II regulations, set to be introduced in 2013, that call for financial institutions to hold greater cash reserves.

Schoolteachers Friendly Society chief executive Steve Code says: “This move gives us the scale that we need to overcome the regulatory hurdle.”

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