Truell addresses the DB consolidation crisis on Thursday

Edi Truell


Truell to form – Edi’s on Zoom on Thursday

I’m very pleased to hear Edi Truell has been booked to speak at the SG Conference I wrote about earlier this week

Digital  comms from Edi tend to be brief these days , since he was forced off his bicycle by an errant pedestrian in September, he has little use of his write hand arm.

With the grim determination he has shown throughout the 7 year odyssey launching a superfund, Truell has soldiered on.

I’m looking forward to hearing the sorry news of his withdrawal from the superfund crawl which began in 2016 (with an invitation from then Prime Minister David Cameron) and ended last month with Truell mothballing a project which has reportedly cost him and his family trust over £40m – so far.

I say so far as I am quite sure there is a son of superfund waiting in the wings and what it is , I want to hear. So should you!

Edi doesn’t mince his words , nor do we want him to. There is a need for pension consolidation to reduce the appalling inefficiency of having over 5000 DB schemes in the UK.

Registration details for Thursday’s event are here

DB Consolidation in disarray.

Bulk annuities provide a solution but it satisfies none of the Chancellor’s golden rules.

The Mansion House reforms calls for better outcomes for DB members, they call for the Government’s supply of gilts to be preserved and they call  for pension funds to provide productive capital to the British economy.

I do not see bulk annuities meeting any of the golden rules. Insurers sell gilts and invest in corporate bonds.  Annuities offer nothing to members beyond the basic promise made to them by their former pension and most emphatically, insured annuities  do not provide the market with productive capital.

There are limited opportunities for employers wanting to remove pension liabilities from their balances sheet. The only approved consolidator is Clara, PPF is an aspirant and Pension Superfund (Edi’s vehicle) has been mothballed. There is no functioning market for DB consolidation, there is no alternative to buy-out other than to run your scheme on. YET.

The PPF (like Clara) is whistling in the wind!

Anyone who listens to the  Pension PlayPen meeting between 40 + pension professionals and the PPF will quickly realise that the PPF are leaning towards an uber conservative approach to consolidation. It’s an approach that needs a crown guarantee. A crown guarantee would offer pensions a chance to be nationalised. That is not going to happen.

While Clara continues to throw drink parties (there’s one at the PLSA), they don’t seem to be consolidating any pensions (despite being approved to do so for over 2 years). The PPF were comfortable that everything in Clara’s garden is rosy, I hope their private equity backers feel the same way.

But unless Clara turn a corner , or  the PPF gets real there is currently no consolidator left in town.

PPF currently has a massive surplus on a very strong basis. So a return seeking strategy is easily accommodated with a lowish risk budget.

They want a Crown Guarantee to trump their rivals but why should the Government give them one?

A PPF consolidator would start with only the scheme assets bought out on a pretty prudent basis. But the initial deals would put the PPF consolidator  on what looks like a  weaker funding baseis than today’s PPF c and with NO surplus.

So what is the scope for their insistence they will invest in  productive capital?

The consolidation agenda is in crisis. It can Truelly be said that the best are mothballed while the worst are filled with a passionate intensity, that is not grounded in reality.

IF the insurance juggernaut is to be halted, then it will need new thinking, That is precisely what we expect from Edi Truell. If you do no more than listen in to him, make sure you are registered by clicking here.

The new – Truelly updated agenda – is here


About henry tapper

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