UK - The Pensions Regulator has rejected proposals from chilled prepared foods firm Uniq to fund a £436m scheme deficit.
In April, this year the firm and trustees of the £576m scheme agreed a three year contribution holiday, with annual payments of £5m set aside to fund liability management schemes and the Pension Protection Fund levy.
The deal also included linking future pension fund contributions to the company's ability to pay, enabling the raising of new capital to fund acquisitions by reducing the percentage share of earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) payable to the pension scheme, and lowering equity exposure from 50% to 30% of scheme assets.
It is the first time the details of funding negotiations between the regulator and a sponsoring employer have been made public in the UK.
In a statement, Uniq said the outcome of the process - whether positive or negative - would have a "fundamental impact" on the pension scheme and on shareholder value.
It added: "The company and the trustee continue to work together to seek a resolution for the pension scheme and the company anticipates it will take some time to resolve."
A TPR spokeswoman said: "We have a duty to look carefully at any proposed transaction which is brought to our attention. Our focus will be on ensuring that no proposed transaction will put members' benefits at further risk.
"In complex cases, The Pensions Regulator is happy to discuss the proposal with potential applicants in advance of a formal application being made."
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