PMI leaves NAPF waiting at the church

PMI leaves NAPF waiting at the church

Merger discussions between the National Association of Pension Funds and the Pensions Management Institute have ended after the PMI opted to stay solo.

In October 2014 it was announced that the PMI, which has 6,500 members, and the NAPF, which represents approximately 1,300 pension schemes, would be assessing the possibilities of a merger.

But Paul Couchman, president of the PMI, put to bed hopes of a merger with his announcement that the PMI would be opting for independence.

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Mr Couchman said: “After careful review by the PMI board and its council, we have decided that PMI is best placed to pursue its strategic objectives as an independent organisation.

“We remain committed to raising standards by providing our members with the highest quality pensions qualifications, and look forward to announcing some exciting new initiatives in the near future.”

His decision notwithstanding, Mr Couchman claimed that talks with the NAPF had been extremely positive, and that the due diligence processes involved in a merger consideration had raised no concerns on either side.

Ruston Smith, chairman of the NAPF, said: “It is with disappointment that we make today’s announcement. We must, however, respect the PMI’s decision not to pursue this opportunity.”

The PMI provides a range of qualifications as well as membership and support services for the professional development of its members.

The NAPF acts as a voice for workplace pensions in the UK. The schemes it represents provide pensions for approximately 17m people, with approximately £900bn in assets. It aims to spread best practice among its members, promote policies that add value for savers and challenge regulation if it adds more cost than benefit.

Adviser view

Anna Sofat, financial planner for London-based Addidi Wealth, said: “Often mergers do not fail because it is bad for consumers but because the management teams cannot agree the terms.”