Northern Bank Pension Scheme, Belfast, Northern Ireland, completed a £680 million ($1 billion) pension buy-in with Prudential, said a spokeswoman for Danske Bank, the parent company.
The £1.25 billion pension fund's deal is the largest buy-in or buyout transaction in 2015 to date in the U.K., covering the liabilities of about 2,000 retirees.
Lane Clark & Peacock was the lead adviser to the bank and trustee on the transaction.
The spokeswoman said in an e-mail that the trustee of the pension fund might consider further buy-ins in the future; the buy-in policy provides some flexibility for extensions. “The trustee will take such steps if it believes it is in members' interests to do so based on professional advice and taking account of market conditions and insurance pricing at the time,” she said.
“We are seeing a trend of well-established pension schemes opting for large annuity buy-ins as their derisking route of choice,” said Tulsi Naidu, executive director of U.K. and offshore at Prudential, in a news release from LCP.