Last February Lloyds announced it was dropping asset manager SLA from running its Scottish Widows workplace pension Swip mandate, saying SLA was now a ‘material competitor’ following the merger of insurer Standard Life with Aberdeen Asset Management.
Since then Lloyds awarded £80 billion of the mandate to Schroders and the rest to BlackRock.
However, SLA has been challenging this decision and said last May Lloyds does not have the legal right to take the mandate from it because it claimed SLA is not a material competitor.
Now an arbitral tribunal has ruled Lloyds was not entitled to terminate the Swip mandate, SLA said in a press statement this morning.
Keith Skeoch, SLA’s chief executive, said: ‘Now the arbitration panel has ruled in our favour, we will carefully consider our next steps, working constructively with Lloyds to bring the matter to resolution.’
SLA said before it decides what to do next, it will continue to manage the Swip assets.
A spokesman for Scottish Widows said: ‘We are disappointed with the decision of the arbitration tribunal, and will look to discuss its outcome with Standard Life Aberdeen.
‘Our strategy remains unchanged, which is to do the right thing for customers. We will discuss starting the process of an orderly transfer of assets to our new partners BlackRock and Schroders. We will continue to work closely with Standard Life Aberdeen to ensure there is no disruption to performance or service.’
In an analyst call last week SLA’s chief financial officer, Bill Rattray, said this mandate is worth £100 million of annual revenue.