Paternoster has taken on the assets of the Emap pension scheme totalling around £170m.
Under the deal terms, Paternoster has taken on the Emap Earnings Related Pension Plan and the Scottish Radio Holdings Pension Scheme.
Paternoster says its pension scheme assets now exceed £750m.
Emap group finance director Ian Griffiths says: “Throughout this competitive process, Emap had two clear objectives for this transaction – our desire to secure EERPP and SRH Scheme members’ benefits in full and secondly, to remove all pension risk for Emap’s shareholders.
“We are pleased that these objectives have both been achieved through Paternoster’s innovative and flexible approach. Paternoster is a leading regulated insurance company, and affected scheme members can be confident that their full benefit entitlements are guaranteed.”
Paternoster chief executive Mark Wood says: “The market is growing rapidly. The value of business secured this quarter already exceeds that of the third quarter. With pension scheme assets secured by Paternoster now exceeding £750m, Paternoster is a leading player in this important market. Both company sponsors and trustees are increasingly recognising the merit of securing the promise to pay pensions through the backing of a regulated insurance company.”
Mercer principal and senior actuary Stuart Faloon, who advised Emap on the deal, says: “The decision to secure members’ benefits with an insurance company represents a very sound solution for both pension scheme members and the company. By purchasing an insurance policy, scheme members are guaranteed to receive their full benefit entitlements.
“The nature of the way members’ benefits have been secured represents a significant development in the types of risk that insurance companies are prepared to price and accept. Traditionally, insurers have required pension schemes to spend years verifying the accuracy of members’ entitlements before they would offer terms to buy out the liabilities. This meant that uncertainty over the ultimate price remained.”