Royal London assets rise to £153bn in first half

Barry O’Dwyer

Royal London said its assets under management increased to £153 billion in the six months to June 30, 2023, from £147 billion at the end of 2022.

First-half operating profit before tax increased 16% to £127 million (H1 2022: £109m) “driven by growth in Workplace Pensions new business contribution and higher risk free rates which increased the expected returns on our assets.”

Net inflows increased 25% to over £3.2 billion.

Life and pensions new business sales of £4.865 billion (H1 2022: £5.494m) reduced in value as higher interest rates decreased the present value of new business premiums.

Royal London is the UK’s largest mutual life, pensions and investment company. It employs more than 1,000 in Scotland and includes the former Scottish Life and Scottish Provident businesses.

Royal London CEO Barry O’Dwyer said: “In the first half of 2023 we delivered good growth in Workplace Pensions new business and our net inflows increased 25% to over £3.2 billion.

“This growth, alongside our continued cost discipline, has helped to deliver a 16% increase in operating profit.

“As many of our customers continue to come to terms with the increased cost of living and higher interest rates, our priority has been to help them navigate these challenges, while building their long-term financial resilience.

“In April, we shared £155 million in ProfitShare with over 2 million members, and the 120,000 new Workplace Pensions customers we have welcomed since the start of the year all became members and are eligible for future ProfitShare allocations.

“Our success in Workplace Pensions is driven by employers increasingly valuing the benefit as a key way of supporting their employees’ financial wellbeing.

“As a result, they are choosing to partner with digital first providers with a strong sense of purpose. As more and more employers adopt this view, mutuals, like Royal London, will be a natural choice.

“Our mutual mindset of continually focusing on delivering positive enduring change for our customers and wider society ensures they, and employers and advisers, continue to place their trust in us.”