Vivendi 2008 Pensioners’ Scheme enters buyout agreement with Met Life Assurance

Vivendi 2008 Pensioners’ Scheme has entered into an agreement with MetLife Assurance to secure its pensioners’ benefits through a bulk annuity contract.

The buyout means MetLife Assurance will assume responsibility for paying benefits to members of the media and communications firm’s pension scheme.

Steve Godson, independent trustee of the Vivendi 2008 Pensioners’ Scheme and director of Capital Cranfield Trustees said: “Our main concern was to ensure long term security for our pensioners and we agreed that transferring to an insurance company was the best way to manage this.†

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“The agreement achieved has meant we were able to formulate the best buyout strategy for the pension fund and its members, mitigating the risk we see in the current market conditions.”

Dan DeKeizer, chief executive, MetLife Assurance, said, “This agreement confirms that despite unprecedented market volatility, there is still strong demand from trustees to find the right solution to secure their pensioner’s benefits.”

Jardine Lloyd Thompson, actuaries to the Vivendi 2008 Pensioners’ Scheme, advised the trustees on the selection of the provider and implementation of the contract.

Amedee Levillain of Zephyrus Partners, was specialist adviser to Vivendi.

The buyout was done using a same day transaction model, which prepares the deal in the weeks prior to transaction day, including agreeing policy conditions.

On the morning of the deal, the values of the pension scheme assets and liabilities are provided and, if the trustees decide to proceed, instructions to transfer assets or pay cash are given that same day.