Pensions 

Just DB de-risking sales almost triple

Just DB de-risking sales almost triple

Just Group saw sales of defined benefit (DB) de-risking solutions increase by 143 per cent to £718m in the first six months of 2018.

In a market update, the provider said this boost in sales was due to an acceleration in the market because employee benefit consultants had managed the industry pipeline, reducing seasonality.

Overall, Just’s retirement income sales increased by 64 per cent, from £719.6m in 2017 to almost £1.2bn this year.

Total new business sales grew by 56 per cent, from £975m to £1.5bn for the six months to the end of June 2018.

The provider’s adjusted operating profit rose 85 per cent to £124m, while new business profit increased 88 per cent to £121m.

Rodney Cook, Just’s chief executive, said these numbers showed the provider’s strategy of focusing on attractive growth markets is working.

He said: "Thee parts of the retirement market that we operate in are experiencing positive momentum and have good long-term prospects.

"The DB market has accelerated this year as the de-risking process has become a mainstream solution."

On the guaranteed income for life solutions, Just saw its sales increase by 9 per cent to £426.5m at the end of June 2018.

Mr Cook added: "Shopping around for retirement income has been further encouraged by a number of Financial Conduct Authority initiatives."

In March, the regulator introduced new rules requiring pension companies to show the best quote from the market in order to stimulate shopping around, and this segment outlook remains positive for the group, the provider said.

Just’s drawdown sales were up 7 pr cent to £23.9m at the end of June, and mainly represented flexible pension plan sales. The product allows consumers to take advantage of pensions freedoms and continues to grow in popularity, the provider added.

The company was formed by the merger of Just Retirement Group and Partnership Assurance in August 2015 and rebranded as Just in early 2017.

maria.espadinha@ft.com