Ralph Stewart's Lifetime picks up former Tower business

Ralph Stewart's variable annuities business,  Lifetime Income, has acquired a book of policies from the old TOWER Insurance business.

Friday, October 6th 2017, 6:00AM

by Susan Edmunds

Under the deal Lifetime is acquiring around $35 million of annuity and unit-linked business from Foundation Life.

Foundation Life took over the Tower legacy life insurance book in 2014. Foundation Life chief executive Grant Piercy said the deal was a small portion of its business in New Zealand and the policies which were sold were closed to new business.

“Annuities in particular were a specialised product in which Lifetime has clear expertise," he said. " We felt our pensioners and unit-linked policy holders who are approaching, or are in retirement, could secure a greater number of options from a dedicated retirement specialist such as Lifetime.”

The deal involves 800 policy-holders.

Stewart said $35m was about a third of Lifetime’s existing asset base. He said Lifetime "look forward to offering Foundation Life policy holders a dedicated range of guaranteed retirement income solutions”.

Nothing would change for the policy-holders involved, he said. Part of the process of getting regulatory approval had been to ensure that Lifetime could continue to provide at least the same level of service and benefits the clients already received.

The transaction required actuarial review by the appointed actuaries of both Foundation Life, Lifetime and an independent actuary, Bernie Higgins.  Members were consulted and the proposed transaction and final approval was approved by the RBNZ.

Tags: annuities Life insurance Lifetime Ralph Stewart regulation Reserve Bank retirement

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