“Pension PlayPen – more serious than it sounds!”




Today I’m off to Newcastle to see a large company that helps people get paid. I’m travelling with a spring in my step after listening to Paul Lewis introduce me as Founder of “Pension PlayPen – more serious than it sounds!”

Because when you talk to large companies and you’ve got the “brand collateral” of Pension PlayPen, it is important that someone who knows what he’s talking about has bigged you up on his Radio Show Moneybox.

If you missed the show, you can find us at minute 18.25 on this link

Siegel and Gale have published a list today of the brands in the UK who are best at getting their message across

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The winners are the brands that have clear messages to their customers. We know what we are getting from Aldi – even if it’s not the poshest – it is the most effective.

Insurance companies like AXA and BUPA find themselves at the bottom of the list, they struggle to explain what they are about.

As Siegel and Gale’s CEO puts it

“Brands that offer simpler customer experiences are rewarded with passionate customer loyalty, more innovative employees and greater revenue. In short, embracing simplicity improves the bottom line for brands and organisations.”

A few decades ago , Virgin was a start up with a curious name, run by a man who looked like Jesus. Richard Branson stuck the course and we intend to do the same!


MX 80sex pistols 3

But being disruptive for the sake of it – is no good. Two bands that came to prominence in 1977 were the Sex Pistols and MX80 Sound, the former made great pop songs that stood the test of time- asfor MX80 Sound- they survive only in my record collection and on this blog!

sex pistols

There has to be intent and that intent must be serious. When I was speaking on the radio, I used an analogy of the Good Men of Chelm who rather than  build a new one, dealt with traffic accidents by building a new hospital.

We can laugh at them, but we do this all the time.sex pistols 2


We are agonising over how to stop people blowing their retirement funds but we’re not giving them ways to spend money wisely. And we worry that we cannot disinfect the governance of our workplace pensions in case we encourage people to opt-out of them.

The centrifugal force of a system is always to yesterday’s solution and never to tomorrow’s challenge.

Someone wrote me this morning or late last night congratulating me on my appearance on Moneybox ..he wrote

Sounds like you have a solution to the Drawdown/Annuity confusion. I wasn’t aware that you and others were working on an alternative

That no-one can see the CDC product as an alternative to Drawdown/Annuity is partly a function of that centrifugal force that demands tomorrow’s challenge is ignored in favour of yesterday’s solution.

So it was that CDC was thrown at the world as a new way for employers to provide DB (well that’s what employer’s heard). The world had moved on- we’re doing things in a DC way now! But the new challenge- that there’s no way to provide people with better income with greater certainty than “Drawdown/Annuity” has been ducked.

What we’ve got instead is some hocus-pocus stuff about synthetic annuities and a load of robots waving algorithms in our faces!

If we want to break away from the imploding death spiral that the centrifugal force supplies, we have to go fly a kite – up in the atmosphere – up where the air is clear!

Some people have this capacity, David Attenborough has it and so does Adele, which I guess is why 2.5m have watched this video. It lifts you up – it’s a lot more serious than it sounds!

About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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