2021

Year

Sell-side

Transaction Type

Business Services

Sector

Inside Pensions

Client

ZEDRA Group

Acquirer

Inside Pensions | ZEDRA Group

Cavendish Corporate Finance has advised the shareholders of Inside Pensions, the largest independent pensions executive support provider in the UK on its sale to international active wealth, global expansion and fund services firm ZEDRA.

The deal will provide St Albans based Inside Pensions, which already has a portfolio of blue chip companies, with the international springboard to take its considerable experience of servicing pension scheme trustees to new clients and into new territories.

For ZEDRA, acquiring such a well-regarded company in this space gives it the opportunity to develop its exposure to the UK market and increase its offering to clients.

Inside Pensions operates in the crucially important but difficult to access area of outsourced assistance for Trustee Boards of occupational pension schemes, helping them run their schemes efficiently by ensuring compliant board administration, awareness of regulatory changes and best practice governance. Companies are increasingly unwilling to carry the cost or key-man risk of in house pension experts to manage their liability, making outsourced solutions provided by firms such as Inside Pensions attractive, supporting trustees to ensure the schemes can meet their obligation to employees in retirement.

Inside Pensions has 39 employees and boasts high quality and long term client relationships, which it will be able to take seamlessly into its next chapter with ZEDRA given the two firms’ aligned goals.

The considerable interest for Inside Pensions demonstrates both its renown in the sector, the strong growth drivers for this kind of outsourced solution and also the improving economic conditions that helped make a deal come together so quickly.

Andrew Jeffs, Cavendish Corporate Finance Partner and Head of Business Services, commented: “We are very pleased to have advised the shareholders of Inside Pensions on this transaction.  Rita, Rachael and Ryan have built the business since 2008 with a long term view of always doing the right thing by their clients and staff.  It was vital to find the right partner to help the firm with its next stage of growth and in ZEDRA I believe we have found a company that shares the same values and vision, as well as one that can realize the global potential of Inside Pensions given its international reach.

We were impressed from the start by Inside Pensions’ long term relationships with occupational pension schemes with combined assets of over £130bn.  The acquisition gives ZEDRA a strong platform to expand its offering in pensions and employee benefits more generally.  In completing the acquisition of the largest privately owned provider in the UK, they are gaining entry into one of the more regulated and difficult to interrupt subsectors of employee benefits, independent pension trustee support.

With no let-up in the rising tide of regulation and the increased burden of compliance on pension schemes and many other players, we expect to see continued deal activity in the outsourced compliance sector.”

Ivo Hemelraad, ZEDRA Chief Executive Officer, commented: “We are delighted to further boost our presence in the UK by welcoming the employees and clients of Inside Pensions to ZEDRA. Inside Pensions has a strong reputation and a leading position in the outsourced pension trustee executive services market, which has significant barriers to entry. The unrivalled expertise and experience of the Inside Pensions team will considerably extend the level of support we can offer to our clients in the pension services space both in the UK and in other jurisdictions.”

Rita Powell Chairman and Founder at Inside Pensions, commented: “Inside Pensions was born out of a market need for independent, professional support for pension trustees, separate from the sponsor, other advisors and service providers to ensure that there was no conflict of interest. The company’s independence enables it to work with and suggest a range of other consulting services, including actuarial, legal and investment advisory.  It has grown from a boutique business to the UK’s leading independent pensions executive support provider for UK occupational pension schemes. Being part of  ZEDRA will enable Inside Pensions to continue to focus on excellent client service and offer a wider range of services to our clients”.

Rachael Fortescue Co-Managing Directors at Inside Pensions: “We are thrilled to join ZEDRA with its established global network and client base and we look forward to becoming a part of the group as it continues to grow and expand its service offering. We are confident that our long- standing industry experience is a perfect fit with ZEDRA’s inherited wealth of knowledge of the role of trustees and its related challenges. It also builds on ZEDRA’s existing international employee benefits portfolio and pension plans offering.”

Key Contacts

Andrew Jeffs

Partner & Head of Business Services

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Stephen Nemeth

Associate Director

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Paris McNicol-Outch

Senior Analyst

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