Kelabi Business

Phoenix to use Standard Life brand to boost new business

The takeover of the Standard Life brand is already helping Phoenix Group to boost new business levels, with cash generation in this area growing by 15 per cent.

According to its half year results for the first six months of 2021, published this morning (August 11), Phoenix plans to invest further in the Standard Life brand as it stays focused on growing new business.

Phoenix bought the Standard Life brand name in May 2021 after it bought Standard Life Aberdeen’s insurance arm in 2018 for £3.28bn.

Andy Briggs, chief executive of Phoenix Group, said: “It is a trusted and well known consumer brand that we are fully committed to investing in and will be a key driver of future growth. 

“Integral to this investment will be an acceleration in our proposition innovation and the roll-out of enhanced technology for customers.”

According to its results, this growth is already being seen as its ‘open’ division saw new business long term cash generation increase by 15 per cent compared to the same period last year to reach £412m.

Phoenix’s business is split into two segments, heritage and open.

The heritage segment comprises products that are no longer actively marketed to clients and has been built through the consolidation of more than 100 legacy insurance brands.

Meanwhile, the open business manufactures and underwrites new products and policies, which are actively marketed to new and existing customers primarily under the Standard Life brand. 

Phoenix said it had made back 90 per cent of its £1.2bn target from its integration of Standard Life  70 per cent from its target of £1.1bn for the ReAssure business. 

Meanwhile, operating profits hit £527m in the first half of 2021, up from £361m the same period last year.

Assets under administration fell by £34bn to £304bn due to the planned disposals of the Wrap Sipp, Onshore Bond and Trustee Investment Plan products to Abrdn and of Ark Life, which was sold last month.

Think tank launch

The firm is also introducing a think tank later this year, called Phoenix Insights.

This will be a new centre for research, ideas and public engagement which Phoenix said is “dedicated to catalysing the change, and innovation, needed across society, to enable us all to live better, longer lives”. 

Briggs said: “I am honoured to be chairing an expert advisory committee, that brings together some of the most distinguished experts in this field. 

“I look forward to Phoenix Insights delivering some truly impactful research, informing the public debate, and, of course, enabling Phoenix to develop the propositions that will help our customers to enjoy their better, longer lives.”

In June, Phoenix said it was no longer looking to sell its European business and confirmed that discussions over the potential sale had stopped.

Back in May, the firm confirmed it was in advanced discussions over the sale of the business, in a deal reportedly worth up to £550m.

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