A breakdown in communication

In November 2013, 2020 Trustees was appointed to a Scheme where the existing trustees and sponsor had essentially fallen out.

The Directors having tried to broker a compromise had given up and were instead looking to sell the business and assets with the Scheme falling into the PPF. The Pensions Regulator was also involved and had expressed concerns.

It was clear to us that such an outcome would be bad for all parties, especially the Schemes’ members.

The first thing that we did was to re-establish dialogue with the Directors, seeking to understand where they were coming from, their concerns and what they wanted to achieve.

This took a series of meetings where we effectively had to manage many disparate parties, including advisors who seemed keen to fight.

Once the relationship was back on speaking terms we sat down to look at the options. The end result, after a short period of intensive negotiation and project management, was an equity sale to a strong overseas employer, a massively strengthened position for the Scheme where members can now fully expect to receive their full benefits and a material payout for the Directors.