Pensions and innovation aren't what you might call natural bedfellows. But investment advisory group Acuvest is set to test that perception with the formation of a new innovation group featuring some heavyweight executives from the Irish business community.
Among them are former Intel boss Jim O'Hara and ex-Glanbia chief executive John Moloney. They have joined the grandly named Acuvest Innovation Group, which is designed to provide the company with "fresh thinking and new perspectives".
Acuvest says this group will play a “key role” in its “mission” to improve and simplify retirement savings for organisations and their employees.
The company advises some of Ireland’s largest corporate pension schemes and their trustees.
Acuvest chief executive John Tuohy said tapping external expertise was one of the "big things" missing from the pensions and investment sector.
“We believe it’s this true ‘outside-the-box’ thinking that helps challenge the status quo and delivers better outcomes for people in retirement savings schemes,” he said this week.
Other members include Mary Walsh, who spent 35 years as a tax partner with PricewaterhouseCoopers in Dublin; Ron Helow, managing director of technology consulting firm New Course Advisors; and Ken Fitzpatrick, chief executive of Digital Marketing Institute, which operates in 25 countries.
Moloney certainly knows a thing or two about the challenges facing defined benefit schemes. When he stepped down from Glanbia in November 2013, the company’s scheme was about €78 million in deficit, albeit that was €20 million less than the previous year.