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Stakeholder blamed as Britannic axes force

Britannic Assurance is axing its 1,600-strong direct salesforce, blaming the Government and regulators for the margins imposed by stakeholder.

It brings the total number of direct-sales jobs lost in the last three weeks to nearly 5,000, after Prudential and Sun Life Financial of Canada both axed their salesforces. Britannic says it will focus on sales through IFAs and tied agencies.

Chairman Harold Cottam says: “It is no longer possible to run large salesforces serving lowto middle-income households on an economic basis.

Pressure from the market, regulators and Government legislation is driving products towards the 1 per cent world. Britannic has concluded it does not make economic sense to continue a direct salesforce.”

Clerical Medical head of strategic marketing David Shelton says: “This demonstrates the Government has not got it right with stakeholder. It is an ironic twist of policy that the providers who can really take stakeholder to its target market cannot do it. People have been saying home services are unviable but stakeholder has tipped the balance.

“These people will now go to banks for stakeholder. Tightening things to 1 per cent limits distribution of a product to the people it was designed for.”

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