West Pharmaceutical Services Inc., Exton, Pa., has purchased a group annuity contract from MetLife to settle about $140 million in pension obligations, said Emily Denney, spokeswoman, in an e-mail.
The company is settling about 44% of its approximately $315 million of outstanding U.S. pension obligations, a news release said. Ms. Denney said the premium amount is not being disclosed.
MetLife will assume the obligations for “specified U.S. retirees and surviving beneficiaries who retired before Jan. 1, 2015, and are currently receiving payments from West’s retirement annuity program,” beginning Nov. 1, the news release said.
The company also said it would contribute about $15 million to the U.S. pension fund this year, “which is intended to restore the plan’s funded status following the annuity purchase to that which existed immediately prior to the purchase,” the news release said.
Premium information was not available by press time.
As of Dec. 31, pension fund assets totaled $322.3 million, while projected benefit obligations totaled $398.5 million, for a funding ratio of 80.9%.