Office Depot UK completes £140 million pensions buy-in

Office Depot UKOffice supplies firm Office Depot UK has completed a £140 million bulk purchase annuity buy-in transaction with the trustee of the Guilbert UK Retirement Benefits Plan, of which it is the sponsor.

Aviva insured the plan liabilities to remove the investment and longevity risk for around 1,500 plan members, who will see no change in the benefits they receive.

The tender process was led by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC), which provided transaction advice to both the trustee and the sponsor, while Travers Smith gave legal advice and Mercer provided administration, scheme actuary and investment advice to the trustee.

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Mike Roberts, chair of the trustee of the Guilbert UK Retirement Benefits Plan, said: “We are delighted to have completed this bulk annuity transaction with Aviva, which will provide greater security and certainty for members’ benefits. With a lot of moving pieces and the constantly evolving landscape of the bulk purchase annuity market, PWC led the process with excellent support from Travers Smith and Mercer to carefully navigate a number of factors to reach this great outcome.”

Niamh Hamlyn, partner at Travers Smith, said: “We were delighted to continue our longstanding partnership with the trustee to achieve this significant milestone for members of the Guilbert Plan. Close collaboration with the teams at PWC, Mercer and Aviva meant that this transaction could be successfully delivered to tight timescales, ensuring positive member outcomes for the years to come.”