Scottish Friendly announces growth in funds at AGM
Press release - 25 April 2012
- Life & pension sales up by 20%
- Funds under management and administration up £0.7 billion
- E-commerce strategy progresses with new channel partnerships
Scottish Friendly, the Glasgow-based financial services group and Scotland’s largest mutual life office, today (Wednesday 25 April 2012) announced a 20% increase in core life and pension sales for 2011 from £11.4 million in 2010 to £13.7 million in 2011, based on the industry standard of regular premiums plus one tenth of single premiums.
The group also increased its funds under management and administration by £0.7 billion to £2.9 billion from £2.2 billion in 2010 despite a fall in stock markets over the 12 months to 31 December 2011.
Scottish Friendly ended 2011 strongly with the sale of its wrap administration business to Citi. The operation, part of Scottish Friendly’s business outsourcing strategy, had achieved significant growth and attracted industry attention as organisations looked to enhance their offerings ahead of the Retail Distribution Review. Scottish Friendly subsequently received a significant return on investment from the sale.
Scottish Friendly made significant strides forward in its e-business distribution strategy in 2011, with the redevelopment of its website and the introduction of a range of flexible online tax-free investment products. It also reaped the benefits of its partnership programme with industry names such as Phoenix, Royal London and Eui group, best known for its Admiral and elephant.co.uk brands, as well as a new partnership with the leading parenting website in the UK, Emma’s Diary.
Chairman Michael Walker said: “2011 has been another year of robust performance, product development and significant progress for Scottish Friendly as it advanced its partnership distribution channel and its e-commerce business.
“Scottish Friendly’s roots stretch back to 1862 when it was originally established as the City of Glasgow Friendly Society. As we celebrate our 150th anniversary, and given the particularly volatile times over recent decades within the financial services industry, it is a testament to Scottish Friendly that it has continued to deliver tangible benefits for members and is now Scotland’s largest mutual life office.”
Fiona McBain, Chief Executive, said: “Scottish Friendly delivered strong results in 2011. These results have been forged despite continued fragility in the economy and in consumer confidence.
“It is clearly a time of great change in the economy in general and in the financial services industry in particular. But this is far from a threat as Scottish Friendly’s track record clearly illustrates how change also presents opportunities for innovative organisations such as ours. We will continue to deliver real value to our members and business partners by capitalising on our competitive edge in flexibility, product development and efficient customer services, and will announce further new exciting ventures this year, the year of our 150th anniversary.”