UK - High street retail giant Kingfisher Group - former owners of Woolworths and Superdrug - has revealed a net FRS17 pension fund deficit of £112m.
Kingfisher dismissed fears about the £112m shortfall, stating that it was unconcerned by the shortfall and pointed out that at the start of its financial year an FRS17 valuation would have shown a net surplus of £25m.
In preliminary results for the year to February 2, the company said: “This deficit is primarily as a result of the adverse return on assets experienced during the year. The FRS17 net pension liability has no impact on pension funding and as a consequence has no impact on the group’s current or future cash flow or reported earnings.”
The group's disclosure under FRS17 reveals that the £1.1bn Kingfisher Pension Scheme and Retirement Trust has just over 65.7% of its assets in equities, 13.4% in bonds and 20.9% in other investments principally made up of cash.
The company also announced that following last year's sale of Superdrug and the demerger of the Woolworths group, its pension schemes will separate the Kingfisher scheme from April 1.
This split will leave the pension schemes of Kingfisher's continuing business holding £841m of assets and having a net FRS17 shortfall of £72m.
The Woolworths and Superdrug businesses will have pension assets of £227m and a FRS17 deficit of £40m. Currently, the schemes have a combined membership of over 120,000 active, deferred and pensioner members.
Kingfisher is advised on its pension scheme by Hymans Robertson.
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