Workers Pension Trust, Belfast, a U.K. master trust, will be consolidated into the Cushon Master Trust, London, in a move that marks the first time an acquired master trust has been merged into another.
Retirement fintech firm Cushon acquired WPT — an independent master trust in Northern Ireland with 138,000 participants and £330 million ($421 million) in assets — in June 2021. The two then operated separately, with independent trustee boards. The move to consolidate the two multiemployer defined contribution plans, or master trusts, will see WPT participants move to the Cushon platform and investments are set to switch to the Cushon sustainable investment strategy, a news release said.
Cushon has £2.3 billion of assets.
"Cushon is walking the walk when it comes to consolidation," said Ben Pollard, chief executive of Cushon, in the release. "In just over three years we have acquired three master trusts. Acquiring master trusts is only the first step in the consolidation journey. The real win is merging them to create greater scale which is a good thing for pension savers. This merger is the first of its kind and with it Cushon is creating the blueprint for further industry consolidation."
The WPT master trust merger is the first to be completed since the introduction of an authorization regime for such plans in October 2018, Cushon said in the release.
Cushon acquired the Salvus Master Trust in 2021, which became the Cushon Master Trust. The acquisition of WPT in June 2021 was followed by the acquisition of Creative Pension Trust in January 2022.