Higham Group, the provider of outsourced administration services to the UK life assurance and pension industries, has acquired Dunnett Shaw, a management and IT consultancy to the same sector.
Dunnett Shaw provides administration consultancy services to product providers, third party administrators and pension schemes, such as BP, Merrill Lynch and Unilever. The Dunnett Shaw staff will form a new Consulting Services business within Higham Group. Jocelyn Blackwell, currently Managing Director of Dunnett Shaw, joins the Higham Group plc main board as Managing Director – Consulting Services.
“The company has come a long way since its formation in 1998,” says Alan Higham, Chief Executive of Higham Group. “We have enjoyed significant growth through quality service delivery and deliberate specialisation. This acquisition marks the start of our most exciting chapter yet.
Having converted from a partnership to a plc in January, Higham Group now employs over 400 people. Dunnett Shaw is best known for its association with the Raising Standards of Pension Administration initiative.
“Financial service providers are working very hard to improve their customer service and there is a real opportunity for Higham Group, with its total commitment to quality service in both process administration and consultancy, to become the market leader for providing services to help these providers achieve their objective,” adds Higham.
Jocelyn Blackwell says there is “a tremendous amount of similarity” between Higham and Dunnett Shaw. “This made this the right partnership for us to enter into, and our collective proposition at Higham Group is of a different quality to anything currently available on the market,” he says. “By drawing on best practice developments across different parts of the financial services market we will help clients make real improvements to their administration delivery. This is a very exciting move that offers significant benefits to clients of both Dunnett Shaw and Higham Group.”
Higham Group, established in 1998, is based in London, Leeds, Edinburgh, Newbury, Glasgow and Telford. It employs over actuaries, administrators and specialist-trained complaints investigation staff. Its client base currently includes Alexander Forbes, Equitable Life, Eversheds Pensions Trustees, HBOS, Legal & General, Lloyds TSB, Law Debenture, Standard Life.