Age Partnership launches new service for the medically underwritten bulk purchase annuity market (BPA)
Age Partnership Underwriting Services launched to assist pension schemes who are considering a bulk purchase annuity contract
Service will collect health and lifestyle data from scheme members and dependants to allow insurance companies to better understand longevity
Age Partnership, a leading retirement income specialist, has launched Age Partnership Underwriting Services (APUS). The service is aimed at defined benefit pension schemes, and their trustees, who are considering a bulk purchase annuity process where scheme members' health and lifestyle is taken in to account.
APUS will contact members to obtain information on their health, lifestyle and medical history which will then be passed to the selected insurers who are active in this growing market. The data supplied will allow the insurers to assess the member's longevity, which could potentially reduce the cost of the BPA premium for the scheme.
APUS is looking to engage with employee benefit companies and advisers who are actively participating in the BPA market, and may be involved with pension scheme trustees who are considering undertaking this process. As a finance company specialising in pension income, APUS will use existing skills and experience engaging with the over-55 demographic to provide a rounded service, and embrace technology wherever possible to increase response rates.
Medically underwritten bulk annuities have steadily grown in popularity and it is expected that market bulk annuity sales will reach £25 billion per annum by 2020.*
Adam Carnall, Head of Age Partnership Underwriting Services, comments:
“Since the budget announcements of last year and the subsequent impact on the individual annuity market, we have watched the developments in the BPA market closely. One of the potential areas for major growth is the addition of health and lifestyle underwriting as part of the BPA process, but what stood out for us is the lack of options scheme trustees had when looking for a partner to engage with their members to collect this information.
“As one of the leading UK pension income specialists, the decision to move in to the BPA market as a data collector has been an easy one. For many years via our annuity broking service we have been collecting high quality underwriting data from customers for individual enhanced annuity sales. One of the key strengths of our business is our people and how we engage with our customers, and we look forward to applying these skills in the BPA market.”
Costas Yiasoumi, Director of Defined Benefit Solutions at Partnership, commented:
"Age Partnership are a welcome addition to the fast growing medically underwritten bulk annuity market. We look forward to working with Age Partnership as they deploy their experience to support trustees in de-risking their pension schemes.”
Tim Coulson, Director of Defined Benefit Solutions, Just Retirement commented:
“Age Partnership's announcement that they intend to provide data collection services to organisations operating in the Defined Benefit de-risking segment is positive news for employee benefit consultants, their clients and providers. Wider choice and competition should encourage further innovation in this exciting and fast growing segment.”
*Based on KPMG 2014 Bulk Annuity Market Insight Report