Aegon has today (15 September) announced it will leave the Association of British Insurers at the end of the year.
Chief executive Adrian Grace explained that looking ahead, it is entering “an exciting new era” with the government encouraging innovation as it pursues its radical modernising agenda to meet the needs and preferences of consumers.
“The industry is responding positively, with each business developing its own priorities and strategies to meet their customers’ needs.
“Aegon’s strategy is to modernise our proposition, continue to build our multi-channel market leading platform, offer ‘to and through’ retirement solutions and focus on advisers, workplace, protection, drawdown and guaranteed products,” he continued, integral to which is the emphasis on digital technology.
“With this in mind, we feel the time is right to separate from the ABI and focus on our strategic aims and put our point of view forward direct to the government and regulators.”
Similar reasons were given when Legal and General informed the ABI last August that it would cease to be a member of the organisation at the end of 2014.
An official statement read that as it evolved over time, now a large proportion of its business lines fall outside the remit of the ABI.
“In the future we believe engagement with government, regulators and other external bodies will be more individually tailored, and less suited to uniform representation through one trade body,” stated L&G at the time.
Huw Evans, director general of the ABI, responded to Aegon’s announcement, by saying that given the changes within Aegon, the move was not unexpected.
“The ABI remains the one voice of our industry which both government and regulators will engage with to progress their reforms and, with the board’s support, we continue to adapt our organisation to meet the changing needs of our membership as their business models evolve.”