The trustee of Countrywide Farmers Retirement Benefits Scheme had sold £100m worth bulk annuity plan to Legal & General in order to secure its benefits

Legal & General

Legal & General acquires £100m annuity plan. (Credit: Pixabay/PublicDomainPictures)

Legal & General Assurance Society (Legal & General), a UK-based financial services provider, has agreed a £100m bulk annuity transaction with the Trustee of the Countrywide Farmers Retirement Benefits Scheme.

As part of the transaction, Legal & General’s unit Legal & General Retirement Institutional will secure the benefits of 360 deferred members and 712 retirees.

Previously, Countrywide Farmers Retirement Benefits Scheme had entered Pension Protection Fund (PPF) assessment in March 2018, after the insolvency of Countrywide Farmers.

But, in November last year, it exited the PPF assessment after securing sufficient assets to fund PPF’s compensation levels.

The deal brings greater benefits to annuity scheme under Legal & General

The trustee of Countrywide Farmers stated that the transaction with Legal & General will allow them to provide benefits greater than those would have been provided otherwise by the PPF.

The transaction also provides the trustee with greater flexibility to bring additional benefits to be secured in the future it expects to receive additional recoveries from the ongoing insolvency proceedings.

Legal & General Retirement Institutional origination & execution director Rachel Cutts said: “We are pleased that we have been able to deliver this transaction which provides greater financial security for the Scheme’s members.

“We have worked closely with LCP to develop an innovative solution for the Scheme, and we look forward to our continued work together with the Trustee and its advisers.

“This transaction builds on Legal & General’s track record of delivering beneficial outcomes for members by enabling pension schemes to exit the PPF, which includes the £2.4 billion transaction with the Nortel Networks UK Pension Plan in 2018.”

Independent Trustee Services director Hetal Kotecha said: “We appointed LCP to provide specialist PPF+ advice to help us optimise outcomes for members of the Countrywide Farmers Scheme.

“With LCP’s expertise in structuring PPF+ solutions, and competitive pricing and flexibility from L&G, we have secured benefits for members that are far higher than we could have hoped for when we started out on this journey.”

In May this year, Legal & General completed a £650m buy-in from the trustees of 3i Group Pension Plan. Through the agreement, the benefits of nearly 280 pensioners and 570 deferred members will be secured.