Schneider Electric has become the first company to sign up to use Salvus Master Trust's Retirement Bridge deculmulation offering.
Schneider - a global energy management and automation firm - said it made the decision to sign up to Retirement Bridge following a rigorous review based on a set of criteria including usability, value for money and compatibility with the firm's existing pension scheme arrangements.
Salvus - the master trust that is part of Goddard Perry - developed its deculmulation product in response to growing calls by the Department for Work and Pensions for viable options for consumers approaching or at retirement.
The product works by giving customers much greater control over withdrawals than existing products on the market, while still being underpinned by the Salvus brand.
Retirement Bridge aims to give customers much greater control over withdrawals than existing products on the market - allowing members to choose between taking their pension fund as a cash sum, buying an annuity or considering a comprehensive range of drawdown options.
These drawdown options include 'drawbridge', which is designed to provide a sustainable regular income to age 75, and ‘suspension bridge', a deferred drawdown option.
Salvus' Retirement Bridge also provides a straight-through processing system whereby the user can select any of these options independently and thus begin the process of withdrawal without the need for advice including client specific discharge forms.
While this is automated, Retirement Bridge has built-in tripwires which allow it to flag up inconsistencies and contact the user to re-confirm their selected choice. Users also have the option to contact a dedicated helpline to answer any queries.
Schneider Electric UK and Ireland pensions manager Jerry Gandhi said: "It was vital for us to find a provider who shared our vision for delivery of quality pension solutions for our employees. Salvus' Retirement Bridge was the obvious candidate for us as a result of its usability, flexible approach to pensions as well as its ability to give employees overall control over their pots in a slick, fully online process."
Goddard Perry managing director Steve Goddard added: "We are very pleased to have been selected by such a respected firm as Schneider Electric. There is currently a paucity of at-retirement options on the market, and the DWP has been vocal in calling for more solutions and innovation especially from master trusts. With SALVUS Retirement Bridge we can help employers engage with their employees and educate them to ensure they are on track to meet their goals."
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