Standard Life to choose Dublin post-Brexit

Insurer says it cannot wait to see result of negotiations between EU and UK produce

Sir Gerry Grimstone said the firm “can’t take a chance” on Brexit

Sir Gerry Grimstone said the firm “can’t take a chance” on Brexit

 

Insurer and asset manager Standard Life is likely to choose Dublin as the base for its European Union subsidiary after Britain leaves the bloc, its chairman has said.

Standard Life already has an operation in Dublin and is unusual among British life insurers in having thousands of customers in the EU. Financial services firms are looking to set up regulated subsidiaries in the EU in case they lose access to the bloc after Brexit.

The company’s chairman Gerry Grimstone said the firm “can’t take a chance” on Brexit as its £11 billion merger with Aberdeen Asset Management draws nearer.

Mr Grimstone said that although he hopes the UK won’t lose its passporting rights once it leaves the EU, the company “can’t take a chance on whether the negotiations will produce such an outcome”.

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“The most likely scenario – and the one we are now working towards – is using our Dublin-based operation to continue to support our European customers and clients,” he said in the text of a speech given to shareholders at the firm’s annual general meeting on Tuesday.

“We are now working through the regulatory matters and other arrangements we would need to put in place to facilitate this.”

Standard Life’s choice of Dublin will be a boost for the capital, which has lost out to high-profile insurers AIG and Lloyd’s of London, which have picked Luxembourg and Brussels respectively.

Standard Life shareholders will vote next month on the firm’s £11 billion ($14.23 billion) merger with rival Scottish fund firm Aberdeen Asset Management.

-Reuters