Lloyds Banking Group & Scottish Widows Ending Contract With Standard Life Aberdeen

17 February, 2018, 00:16 | Author: Elaine Woods
  • Standard Life Aberdeen co-CEOS Keith Skeoch and Martin Gilbert

The funds have been run by Aberdeen since its £650mln acquisition of the asset management unit of Scottish Widows from Lloyds in 2014.

Industry analyst Ned Cazalet said the writing was on the wall back in October, when Lloyds bought Zurich UK's pensions and savings business in a deal that added £19bn in assets and 500,000 customers to Scottish Widows. Goldman Sachs Group restated a "buy" rating on shares of Standard Life Aberdeen in a report on Monday, February 5th.

"Aberdeen has delivered good service and performance and Scottish Widows and Wealth would welcome their participation in the review if Standard Life Aberdeen is able to resolve the competition issue". "We will be discussing the implications of this with Lloyds and Scottish Widows".

A United Kingdom pension fund and its parent bank have terminated about $200 billion in respective mandates with a major global asset manager.

Antonio Lorenzo, chief executive of Scottish Widows and group director of insurance and wealth at Lloyds, said the merger meant its assets were being "managed by a material competitor".

Scottish Widows, which is owned by Lloyds, initially agreed to wait six months following the completion of the merger before a decision was made.

"Therefore, we will begin an in-depth assessment of the market to identify a long-term strategic partner, or partners, to manage the current £109 billion of assets".

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There will be no immediate change of asset manager as further contractual conditions require any termination is subject to a 12 month notice period.

Standard Life Aberdeen (SLA) opened at GBX 364.10 ($5.03) on Tuesday.

It is estimated that the loss of the business would reduce Standard Life Aberdeen's £2.8bn turnover by around £140 million. Standard Life Aberdeen presently has an average rating of "Buy" and a consensus target price of GBX 477.50 ($6.60).

The bank is launching its three-year strategy next week. This would make some sense now the bank has recovered from the financial crisis and will be looking for opportunities to grow and diversify.

However, he says 12 months would be a very short amount of time to pull off such a move.

The Lloyds Banking Group mandate represents close to a fifth of Standard Life Aberdeen's assets under management, which have already fallen from £670 billion to £646 billion because of a wave of investor redemptions and despite the uplift from near record equity prices.

SLA's shares cratered at the open following the announcement, falling nearly 9%, before recovering. That said, it only accounted for 5% of the firm's total revenue in 2017.



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