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National Grid sparks £1.6bn pensions deal with L&G

by ace
A pylon carries electricty from the Wylfa nuclear power station.

National Grid, the FTSE-100 dealership, will unveil another step in its efforts to reduce its vast pension liabilities this week when it strikes a £ 1.6 billion deal with Legal & General (L&G).

Sky News understands that the company, which is near the top of labor leader Jeremy Corbyn's list of nationalization goals, will announce the completion of a pension purchase transaction as early as Tuesday.

Under the agreement, L&G will assume responsibility for paying retirement benefits to about 6,000 members of National Grid's defined benefit pension plan.

Image:
The screen bank inside the National Grid control room

This will be just over a month after the power operator announced a £ 2.8 billion pension purchase agreement with Rothesay Life, another of the specialist insurers operating in the Pension Risk Transfer business.

Tuesday's deal will cover a modest part of National Grid's retirement plan, which is among the largest in the UK energy industry.

It will come at a time of intense interest in the company, with executives continuing to deal with the aftermath of the August blackout, which temporarily left one million homes and businesses without power.

National Grid's exposure to a possible nationalization offer by Labor if it wins the general election led the company to transfer parts of its UK operations to holdings in Luxembourg and Hong Kong, according to The Sunday Times.

Sources said their latest pension risk agreement reflected ongoing efforts to lower the company's balance sheet.

The PRT sector has grown in size in recent years, when pension managers and corporate boards have tried to manage pension risks more efficiently.

L&G obtained a partial buy-in of £ 4.6 billion from Rolls Royce Holdings earlier this year, the largest transaction of its kind in the UK.

It is understood that the National Grid curators were advised by Aon.

L&G and National Grid declined to comment on Monday.

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