Simplitium™, the financial services transparency specialist and a Cinnober Group company, today announces that Smart Pension, one of the leading UK Master Trusts, has signed as the first client for its ClaritEx™ cost transparency solution for pension schemes. ClaritEx offers schemes unparalleled access to their underlying cost data, setting new standards for transparency in the pensions industry.
The system will support and further strengthen Smart Pension's corporate governance framework and help the firm to communicate a previously unattainable level of detailed costs and charges incurred across the value chain. ClaritEx uses an interactive user dashboard to focus on providing a granular costs and charges breakdown, enabling the chair of trustees to provide comprehensive and accurate information regarding costs to members in its annual statement. Smart is amongst the first firms in the Defined Contribution (DC) market taking steps to further improve engagement with scheme members around the topic of cost transparency.
Transparency is increasingly critical in the pensions industry as part of demonstrating effective governance. Several regulatory initiatives have been implemented recently and more are scheduled this year to improve transparency of costs in the pensions industry. Most recently, new FCA rules which came into effect on 3 January 2018, require asset managers to provide transaction costs to DC scheme providers and governance committees, while new cost disclosure standards are due to be published imminently by the FCA's Institutional Disclosure Working Group.
Claire Altman, Head of Financial Services for Smart Pension, said "Smart is very pleased to be working with Simplitium to develop a cost transparency solution. As a fintech, we are always keen to identify and implement the latest proven solutions which provide pragmatic innovation for both our clients and our business. ClaritEx will provide us with access to previously unattainable levels of understanding about our costs and charges. We will use this information to further enhance engagement and to provide additional insight into how we operate our business more efficiently for the benefit of scheme members."
Tom Hibbard, Head of Pensions Business Development for Simplitium, said "Welcoming Smart as the first client for our ClaritEx service is a significant milestone. Smart is the pioneering UK Master Trust and has established a strong reputation for combining a fintech mindset with pensions expertise in innovative ways for the occupational pension marketplace. With regulatory scrutiny of costs growing and authorities and scheme representatives increasingly demanding increased disclosure of costs, Simplitium provides the next generation solution to the reporting challenges faced by pension schemes."
Smart Pension was founded by experienced finance and technology professionals in 2015 and was designed specifically to support businesses faced with the challenges of providing workplace pensions. It spent over a year developing and testing its platform whilst also establishing the partnerships necessary to meet regulatory requirements and deliver a seamless end-to-end experience. With thousands of satisfied employers, advisers and half-a-million employees now using the platform, the MAF-accredited award-winning provider offers one of the best workplace pension solutions currently available in the UK.
Combining innovative technology with a detailed understanding of the challenges facing the pensions industry, Simplitium delivers an independent service which assists with the governance of schemes and increases transparency of retirement savings.
Launched in 2015, Smart Pension exceeds £4bn in assets under management (AUM) and now serves over one million members and more than 70,000 employers. It is powered by Keystone, Smart’s global savings and investments technology platform.
Aquiline Capital Partners, Barclays, Chrysalis Investments, DWS Group, Fidelity International Strategic Ventures, J.P. Morgan, Legal & General Investment Management, Link Group and Natixis Investment Managers are all investors in Smart Pension.