Airwave, the leading provider of critical voice and data communications to public service organisations in Great Britain, has received the prestigious Pension Quality Mark (PQM) PLUS for its group stakeholder pension plan.
The Airwave Group Stakeholder Pension Plan was established in 2007, following Airwave’s separation from the O2 group of companies, and support was provided by Punter Southall in the design, provider selection process and communication programme of the plan.
A Pension Governance Committee was established to oversee all aspects of the Plan, into which the contributions on offer from Airwave exceeded not only those previously offered within O2’s DC Plan, but also exceed the generous contribution levels required to achieve PQM PLUS. Since inception, the opportunity to pay contributions through salary exchange has been introduced, with Airwave’s net savings being applied entirely for the benefit of the plan membership.
Commenting on the award, Geoff Smith, Airwave’s group HR director said: “The Airwave Pension Governance Committee has worked hard to ensure that the design, communication and governance of the plan met the exacting standards required by the PQM (operated by the National Association of Pension Funds).”
Geoff went on to say that “we are therefore delighted that our fund has been recognised with this independent quality award”.
Joanne Segars, NAPF chief executive, said: “We’re delighted that Airwave has joined the growing number of companies who have PQM. Airwave is offering a fantastic pension with a contribution level that matches and even exceeds the high standard set by PQM PLUS. People need to wake up to the importance of saving for their retirement, and schemes like this can make all the difference.”
PQM was launched by the National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) in September 2009. Over 110 schemes now qualify and approximately 200,000 active scheme members are now covered by schemes that carry the mark. There are two standards, PQM and the highest standard – PQM PLUS.
Under PQM PLUS, the scheme’s total contributions must equal at least 15 per cent of an employee’s salary, with a minimum employer contribution of 10 per cent.
PQM is the basic standard. It recognises DC schemes whose total contributions are of at least 10 per cent, with a minimum employer contribution of 6 per cent.
Notes to Editors
About Punter Southall Group:
The Punter Southall Group was founded in 1988 and provides a unique range of financial services including actuarial consulting, administration, employee benefits consulting, independent financial advice and investment services for pension funds, corporates and individuals.
Punter Southall Group key facts:
- Approximately 700 staff in 11 locations throughout the UK
- 1,000 pension schemes, companies and organisations taking pensions consultancy and investment advice on a mix of ongoing and project based work
- 4,000 private clients
- Over 150,000 occupational pension scheme members administered by us
- £87m Group turnover in 2009
- £8bn of assets under management
- £18bn of assets under advice
- In 2010 Punter Southall Transactions Services was named Pensions and Actuarial Due Diligence Provider of the Year – UK and Punter Southall Consulting Actuaries won the Actuarial Advisory – UK award.at the ACQ Global Awards held in London on May 25 2010.
- In 2009, Punter Southall was named UK Actuarial & Investment Advisory Firm of the Year at the ACQ Awards held in London in May 2010
The following businesses are incorporated within the Punter Southall Group:
- Punter Southall Consulting actuaries, pensions administrators, consultants and DC www.puntersouthall.com
- Punter Southall Transaction Services Actuarial services in corporate transactions www.pstransactions.co.uk
- Punter Southall Financial Management Independent Financial Advisers www.psfm.com
- P-Solve Asset Solutions Investment consultants and asset solutions: www.psolve.com
- PSigma Investment Management Wealth managers www.psigma.com
- PSigma Asset Management Institutional and retail asset managers: www.psigma.com
- PS Independent Trustees Independent pension scheme trustee services: www.psitl.com
- Camradata Analytical Services Institutional investment information in Europe and North America www.camradata.com
Airwave delivers critical voice and data communications to organisations that provide vital public services – the police, fire and ambulance services, local authorities, health, utilities and transport providers.
Airwave has invested £1.3billion to date to create the Airwave network, which was purpose built to meet the needs of emergency services. The network is totally secure, covers 99% of Great Britain’s landmass and is interoperable, meaning that for the first time members of different public service organisations can communicate with one another.
The Airwave network is the first public service network in the world to offer secure, seamlessly integrated communications between emergency services and other emergency responders, and has made the UK a world leader in critical communication.
Airwave provides consultancy, training and technology solutions for critical care providers, emergency services and public safety networks around the world and is proud to be an official supplier to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Punter Southall Content (MHP Communications)
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