STM hires risk specialist, reports 2016 profit results to be ‘in line’ with expectations

STM Group, the Gibraltar-based, AIM-listed pensions specialist, said Thursday that it has appointed a banking industry veteran to the newly-created post of head of enterprise risk management, as it issued an end-of-year trading update. 

The appointment, STM said, would bring “a further level of oversight and governance” to its operations.

STM said its trading in 2016 was “in line with market expectations” of posting a pre-tax profit in 2016 of £2.7m, identical to the previous year’s profit.

This, it said, reflected, as anticipated, a “pricing initiative” introduced in the first part of 2016 that “significantly increased the take-on of new business for its QROPS international pensions product, with new policies for the second half of the year up by circa 50% on the first half of the year, and 27% on the second half of 2015”.

“As previously indicated, whilst this strategy resulted in a reduction in first year profitability, it does result in an increased level of recurring revenue for future years,” the statement said.

“This leaves STM well placed to deliver significant growth in revenue and profit in 2017.”

STM is due to deliver its final results for the 12 months to the end of December on 14 March.

STM’s new head of enterprise risk management is Marina Dominguez Steglich, who is described as having held “held senior operational and regulatory roles within the banking industry for over 20 years”. Among these is understood to have been a similar risk management role with Credit Suisse’s Gibraltar operation, which was acquired last year by J Safra Sarasin.

As reported,  STM said in December it had named Robin Ellison, a well-known London pensions lawyer from Pinsent Masons, as a non-executive director. Ellison was also one of the founders of London & Colonial, a UK-based pension fund provider that STM acquired last year, as it  looked to enter the UK’s self-invested personal pensions market.

In its trading statement today, STM said that its integration of London & Colonial “continues to run smoothly, with the anticipated integration gains and contribution to profits expected for 2017 starting to come to fruition”.

2016 decisions ‘beneficial’

STM Group chief executive Alan Kentish added that the company’s decisions last year to pursue the London & Colonial acquisition, and the  “pricing initiative”, had both “proved beneficial to the group and strengthen growth prospects”.

“With the recently announced appointment of Robin Ellison as a further non-executive director to the Board, as well as Marina joining as head of enterprise risk management, we continue to build on our governance and reporting structure,” he continued.

“We head in to 2017 knowing that recurring revenue streams from our highly profitable pensions and life businesses have never been higher, giving us cause for optimism for the year ahead.”

As reported, STM Group was revealed in December to be one of an unknown number of pension scheme providers who have clients whose pensions hold stakes in the Trafalgar Multi Asset Fund, which is currently suspended and now appears likely to be wound up.

STM, which was founded in 1989, has specialised in qualifying recognised overseas pension schemes (QROPS) almost since they were created by the UK’s “A Day” pension rule changes in 2006.

To read the trading statement posted today on the London Stock Exchange’s website, click here. 


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