NOW: Pensions celebrates its second Birthday with 125000 members

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Just ahead of its second birthday in the UK, NOW: Pensions, the independent multi-employer trust backed by Danish pension scheme ATP, has today outlined its achievements in the UK market to date and its plans for future growth.

NOW: Pensions key facts as at 30 September 2013

  • 346 employers signed and working with many more
  • 375,000 workers being processed through NOW: Pensions’ auto enrolment systems relieving administrative burden for employers
  • A member base of c.125,000
  • Average opt-out rate across all members 6.9%
  • Average opt-in rate across all members 0.46%

NOW: Pensions came to the UK in October 2011 with a mission to change the pensions landscape in the UK by providing an option for auto enrolment that is easy to implement, cost effective and ensures the optimum outcome for members – smarter, simpler, better.

With clients across all industry sectors, NOW: Pensions has been selected by a wide range of well-known UK companies to provide their workplace pension schemes including Fitness First, Durham University and ISS.

In recent months, NOW: Pensions has secured contracts with Ipswich Town Football Club and Age UK Stafford & District among many others.

Morten Nilsson, CEO of NOW: Pensions said: “The UK pensions market is incredibly crowded but, despite the proliferation of schemes there is a lack of genuine differentiation.

“When we launched, we felt confident that our fresh approach would resonate with employers and so far the response we’ve received has been overwhelmingly positive.

“We are the only new private entrant into the market and have had to build our presence without the benefit of an existing client base, existing awareness or UK government sponsorship.

“From a standing start in the UK market, we have already made a significant dent and are delighted with our achievements so far. We are ahead of our original forecasts and remain confident that as awareness of our offer grows, even more employers will turn to us.”

Establishing the foundations for future growth

As NOW: Pensions enters the next stage in its growth and development, ATP has underlined its commitment to the company by converting a development loan into equity. This ensures that NOW: Pensions is extremely well capitalised with £50 million of share capital allowing it to maximise the opportunity that exists in the UK market and compete on at least equal terms with other industry players.

To further strengthen its governance structure, NOW: Pensions has taken the decision to split its board into two. A Commercial Board concerned with the day to day running of NOW: Pensions Limited will be established with the Trustee Board having sole responsibility for ensuring that the scheme is run in the best interests of members at all times. Carsten Stendevad, CEO of ATP who is the ATP representative on the Trustee Board has stepped down to preserve complete independence and will join the Commercial Board as Non-Executive Chair. [1]

Carsten Stendevad, Chairman of NOW: Pensions Ltd. and CEO of ATP said: “We are very pleased with the progress achieved in just two years. As auto enrolment gathers pace, the market opportunity will expand significantly. With ATP’s continued support, NOW: Pensions is well positioned to become a leading workplace pension provider in the UK.”

Nigel Waterson, Chairman of NOW: Pensions Trust said: “NOW: Pensions has always prided itself on its best of breed governance structure and we are constantly challenging ourselves to ensure that we are living up to our own high standards.

“The Board of Trustees has played a key role in the development and success of NOW: Pensions, ensuring not only that the scheme is robust, but that its being run in the best interests of members.”

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For further information:

Amy Mankelow
NOW: Pensions
Tel: +44 203 640 9075

Victoria Leyton
Lansons Communications
Tel: +44 207 294 3620

Notes for editors:

NOW: Pensions   @NowPensions

NOW: Pensions is a multi-employer trust. The investments are managed by NOW: Pensions Investments, a subsidiary of ATP in Denmark, and the administration is carried out by Paymaster, an established UK third party administrator.

The NOW: Pension Trustee Directors, whose role is to safeguard the interests of members, comprises well-known industry figures with different areas of expertise:

  • Nigel Waterson, former Shadow Pensions Minister
  • Imelda Walsh, former Group HR Director of Sainsbury’s
  • John Monks, member of House of Lords and former General Secretary of ETUC and TUC
  • Christopher Daykin, former Government Actuary
  • Win Robbins, former Head of European Fixed Income at Barclays Global Investors

NOW: Pensions is committed to developing a better workplace pension provision in the UK by offering a simple, high quality, cost efficient and systematically risk managed pension product that delivers better retirement savings for UK employees. With over 45 years’ experience providing Denmark’s working population with stable and consistent pensions returns, NOW: Pensions is set to transfer the knowledge acquired in Denmark to the UK pension market. Charges are just £1.50 per month administration charge (reduced administration charge of £0.30 – £1.00 to be applied during auto enrolment phasing for lower earners) plus a 0.3% annual product investment management charge, with no hidden charges.

In April 2013, NOW: Pensions became the first master trust to attain the NAPF’s new PQM Ready Standard. The benchmark shows employers that NOW: Pensions is a well governed pension scheme with low charges and good member communications.

The ATP Group

Arbejdsmarkedets Tillaegspension (ATP) / Danish Labour Market Supplementary Pension is a statutory pension fund. It was established as an independent entity in 1964 with the objective of ensuring a greater retirement income for the Danish population. ATP has since developed to become the largest pension fund in Denmark. Together with the tax-financed basic state pension, ATP provides basic income security in old age for the Danish population.

ATP covers almost the entire Danish population representing 4.8 million members and 160,000 employers. In addition to the ATP Scheme, the ATP Group administers a number of pension and social insurance schemes, including several for the Danish state.

The ATP Group total assets under management amounted to DKK 602bn/approximately GBP 67.5bn (i.e. guaranteed benefits: DKK 516bn/GBP 57.8bn + bonus potential: DKK 85bn/GBP 9.5bn) at 30 June 2013. ATP invests in a wide variety of assets globally. Investment categories are broadly: equities, interest rates, credit, inflation and commodities.

NOW: Pensions has a good technical infrastructure combined with a pension product suitable for our team. We couldn’t be happier with NOW: Pensions.
Martin Woods,