Aegon has said it will leave life company trade body the Association of British Insurers (ABI) at the end of the year, and instead lobby the government and regulators directly.
Aegon chief executive Adrian Grace (pictured) said the move was part of its plans to "modernise" the business through digital technology which "means at times providers must act individually".
"With this in mind, we feel the time is right to separate from the ABI and focus on our strategic aims and put our point of view forward direct to the government and regulators," he said.
Aegon has "enjoyed benefitting from and contributing" to ABI discussions over legislative, regulatory and industry-wide developments over the years, Grace added, but that the industry is entering a "new era".
"The government [is] encouraging innovation as it pursues its radical modernising agenda to meet the needs and preferences of consumers," he said.
"The industry is responding positively, with each business developing its own priorities and strategies to meet their customers' needs."
Aegon's decision is the second high profile exit from the ABI after Legal & General (L&G) broke from the group at the end of 2014.
At the time it gave similar reasons for leaving to those given by Aegon, saying it wanted engagement with government, regulators and other external bodies that was more "individually tailored, and less suited to uniform representation through one trade body".
ABI director general Huw Evans said Aegon's exit was "disappointing".
"It is always disappointing to lose a member, but given the changes within Aegon, this was not unexpected.
"The ABI remains the one voice of our industry which both government and regulators will engage with to progress their reforms and, with the board's support, we continue to adapt our organisation to meet the changing needs of our membership as their business models evolve."
Current ABI chairman and Axa UK chief exectuive Paul Evans quickly jumped to the trade body's defence.
"At a time when our markets are facing such significant change, the ABI has never been more relevant to its members, and continues to enjoy our full support," he said.
In this week's Pensions Buzz, we want to know whether you support the ruling that defined benefit (DB) trustees must equalise GMPs in past transfers.
This week’s top stories included the rejection of an automatic guidance amendment in the Pension Schemes Bill, while The Pensions Regulator posted a sharp increase in the use of its powers.
The majority of the pensions industry agrees an eventual net-zero target should not be mandated for schemes as part of the Pension Schemes Bill, according to a Professional Pensions poll.
Local Pension Partnership Administration (LPPA) has become the latest organisation to join the Pension Scams Industry Group (PSIG) forum.
Two-thirds of UK fund managers are reducing investments in companies that fail on diversity and inclusion scores, according to a survey by Edelman.