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Tata to sign Nest contract before general election

The Personal Accounts Delivery Authority has announced Tata Consultancy Services as the successful bidder for the National Employment Savings Trust scheme administration services.

Pada intends to sign a contract with TCS later this month, before the general election.

The Conservatives are planning to review the Nest scheme if they win the election and Work and Pension Shadow Secretary Nigel Waterson has said it is imperative contracts are not signed before then.

Pada revealed in December that Great-West Retirement Services had withdrawn from the administrator bidding process leaving just Tata in the running. The Liberal Democrats claimed Tata had Pada “over a barrel”.

Logica UK withdrew from the competitive dialogue process for the contract in November.

The contract is divided into two stages and runs for 10 years, with possible extensions for up to a further five years. The first stage will run to October 2010, allowing TCS to begin the activity required to set up and administer Nest.

Prior to the expiry of the first stage, a decision will be made on whether to proceed with the contract for the remainder of the contract term.

Pada chief executive Tim Jones says: “This is excellent news. As we proceeded through our detailed procurement process TCS emerged as an extremely strong bidder, both in terms of their capabilities in pension administration and in their ability to provide value for money for Nest members.

“Signing the contract early, in stages, allows us to get on with our work to deliver Nest.”

Minister of State for Pensions and the Ageing Society Angela Eagle says: “I congratulate TCS on their success in the competition to provide the scheme administration services for Nest, which will be central to the new pensions landscape.

“Together with automatic enrolment, Nest will help millions of people save for their retirement, with a guaranteed employer and Government contribution.”

Tata Consultancy Services chief executive N. Chandrasekaran says: “TCS is delighted to be confirmed as the preferred bidder to deliver the Nest scheme administration solution and services.

“This project will make a difference to millions of people in the UK and we are fully committed to it. Our selection as the preferred bidder demonstrates our strong domain and solution expertise and highlights our commitment to the UK public sector.

“We are happy to be part of a project that benefits the broader UK economy by helping create real value for UK society and delivering world class services to its citizens.


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There are 17 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. How can any party class this as a victory?

    No big player in the TPA industry in the UK wanted to touch this disaster waiting to happen!

    Not really a competition if there is only one company involved!

    Oh dear!

  2. I really would be disappointed if it turned out a major political donation had sealed this contract

  3. This may be a help to millions of young people with time to save but it could be a disaster for older people who have no other retirement provision buy lifting their income above benefit levels.

  4. Pada? Tata?

    Sounds like an episode of Teletubbies.

    How apt!

  5. I do not believe that this present Government should be signing the Country up to contracts that could easily be cancelled after the election.

    The election should give us as a Country time to reflect on what services we as Taxpayers should be paying for and which are not viable.

    There should be a period of time before an election that major contracts cannot be signed. It may not be in our interests for contracts to be signed and then cancelled at a cost to us..

    Politicians will not listen and go happily into setting up these contracts costing us money.

    I believe that NEST is a waste of time and the funding should be going into making the State Pension better with more money allocated to this.

  6. Lindsay Lockett 2nd March 2010 at 11:06 am

    I can’t wait for this to happen, just wait until the millions of NEST users try to make any sense of what is going on with their contributions. They will no doubt be able to speak to their friendly Indian call centre, at which point they’ll come flocking back to UK advisers for help. Of course they won’t be able to afford our fees an they can thank the Government and FSA for improving their ‘outcomes’.

  7. Exactly what I was thinking. All those contributers information sent over to another country with access to wages, employer and personal data…wonderful!

    I for one won’t let any of my details go there if I can help it.

    I fully agree this should wait until after the election where it can be fully discussed.

  8. The contract will presumably contain large penalty clauses prevented the next (presumably Conservative) government from pulling NEST hence Waterson’s concerns. Maybe TCS threatened to pull out if a contract was not offered before the GE?

    Oh to be a fly on the wall…

  9. Voice of reason 2nd March 2010 at 12:03 pm

    We spend millions and millions of taxes on PADA yet the simple solution was to for the Govt to say that from 2010 contributions of a least 3%/3% must be made to existing Stakeholder Plans.

    They are already set up, the charges are capped, members often have a reasonable choice of funds, most have lifestyling, they are easily moved from one employer to another, death benefit is 100% return of fund. The providers for all their faults generally administer them well.

    No, this is too simple an option and Labour can’t control where people invest their fund.

    My big worry about NEST is that a Labour Govt will dictate where they fund is invested i.e used to fund Govt debt via the enforced purchase of Gilts.

  10. it is outrageous to sign this prior to the election

  11. I agree with previous comments and am extremely concerned that my personal / business information will be going to another country where the systems do not appear to be entirely robust or secure. There is a lot more to be understood about the arrangements in this respect and I for one would not be happy with my details being accessed by another country.

    As for the whole concept of NEST – a political disaster waiting to happen.

  12. Pada head, Richard Jones, on a salary of £230,000, was previously head of Simpay Ltd and before that Purseus, two financial systems companies which failed to launch. His Business Delivery Director, Simon Richards, was recruited from Simpay Ltd at £207,000. Another recruit is Investment Director Mark Fawcett. His last job was at Thames River running a Japanese Equity fund, but this was closed in October 2008, he was made redundant and since then… Fortunately for him, he is a good friend of Richards – indeed, was his best man.

    Richards has also brought in Nick Sex (sic) and Adrian Boniface from a consultancy called Alpheus which he ran between leaving Simpay and joining NEST. Alpheus has now been awarded a consultancy contract by NEST, which will not disclose the details of, nor the amount that have been paid over.

    Given the cosiness of these relationships, the last thing these guys want is for the gravy train to be derailed by a new government, so getting a long-term service deal with somebody – anybody!!! – is crucial.

    What is going on at NEST is a scandal, and in time it will become a financial disaster.

  13. We really must be viewed by the world as a soft target at the moment. What happened to negotiating from strength? Tata own Chorus and they are in the process of closing down British steel production and losing jobs for British workers, even though the steel they produce is rated as the best in the world. Is there no joined up thinking anymore? So much for centralised government and the notion of job creation schemes! I can see that this scheme will create jobs but where are those jobs going to be located? No prizes for guessing correctly! The only consulation being the if things go on like this there will be no workers to have pension schemes to administer anyway, so what really will be the point? As for personal data flying out of the country, too late, if you have a credit card then it has already left.

  14. Don’t worry, this scheme is never going to happen – didn’t Labour delay the start of it until 2016 last year?

    I have one huge ambition left in life and that is to see a New Government reintroduce simple and effective financial products and systems.

    This discussion thread brings just one aspect to mind.

    The opportunity to Contract out of SERPS was a massively successful pension opportunity for young people which Labour has ruined for half a generation.

    No need to fund a new mandatory second pension system because we already have one in operation because higher employee and employer National Insurance contributions pay for it. Contracting out was an annual retrospective rebate into a PR pension pot from money already collected.

    If NEST gets introduced, the additional NI that are automatically collected from employees (and their employers) that are not part of Contracted Out Final salary pension schemes will have that money stolen as an additional tax by a Labour Government. It will change the equivalent basic rate of tax for most of these people from 20% to 25%.

    I will be fighting to the death for SERPS/S2P and the opp to contract out to be resurrected.

  15. this is good deal for both party. we need out sider

  16. Just something else we all worry about but have no control over. No major pieces of legislation/contracts etc should now be signed until we have all had a chance to have our say over this government and the bureaucracy they have created.

    As many have said before, simply take more NI off those not in a company pension scheme and increase the state pension. Too easy or what!

  17. This is hilarious (for all the wrong reasons). Its like a farce highlighted by statments such as “Our selection as the preferred bidder”. Where was the concious selection by PADA. The fact was that TATA was not the preferred bidder but the only bidder.

    . . and the desparation to have a contract signed prior to a general election gives it an extremely bad aroma. If it this was a sound project and selection process with integrity why the haste? Will this decison making and selection process not withstand positively against scutiny?

    Once upon a time you could be proud to be Britsh. Now we appear to be incapable of doing anything for ourselves and TATA say “helping create real value for UK society and delivering world class services to its citizens”. Afterall it seems we cant even make a bar of chocolate now.

    So even if we cant keep our chocolate British – How about our data, our personal details, or are we no longer British?

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