Two member votes are set to take place at a special general meeting next month.
The move comes as opposition to the Bain deal grows.
Bain has committed to investing in the provider with the aims of:
- Increasing policyholder numbers from 1.2m to 2m
- “Double smooth” managed fund product sales
- Extending the footprint of LV=’s equity release product
- Reclaiming LV=’s position as a top 3 provider of life insurance products
LV= has started the process to towards demutualisation in its latest step in its sale to Bain but members must vote in favour of the acquisition proposals.
Members are set to receive a share of £111m in one-off payments should the deal with Bain go ahead via a Part VII transfer.
This type of insurance business transfer scheme requires backing from a court hearing and members voting in favour. LV=’s articles of association need to be changed via a scheme of arrangement in order to transfer the ownership of the business to a Bain-controlled entity, effectively demutualising the provider. It also requires the backing of the Financial Conduct Authority. The regulator gave the green light to the provider last month.
Alongside the proposed £111m payment to members, Bain also projected £101m of “policy payout enhancements” for members. Therefore, total payments to members under the deal are projected to be £212m.
In its latest announcement, Bain has committed to spending £160m on IT modernisation, business operational improvements, product development and customer service funded from operating cashflows for LV= should the deal go ahead.
Bain said its deal with the provider was necessary to ensure the long-term financial stability of LV= which is currently burdened with debt and large pension liabilities.
Matt Popli, managing director of Bain Capital, said: “Our proposed investment maintains an independent LV=, and is predicated on LV=’s inherent significance, its heritage and brand. To be sustainable and achieve long-term success, LV= needs capital to address its heavy debt pile, fund its pension liabilities and invest for growth. With profits members should not bear the burden of this investment. As a result of the transaction, LV= will be strengthened with access to more capital and structured with less debt.”
No new debt would be added to LV=’s balance sheet from the transaction, which would also provide £264m of funding to support and de-risk the two staff DB pension schemes.
LV= announced the acquisition by Bain in December but has faced resistance.
MP members of the parliamentary group for mutuals wrote to the governor of the Bank of England in May asking questions about the Bank’s interactions with LV= and sharing concerns about the potential demutulisation of the investment, insurance and pensions provider.
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