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It's hard to avoid the fact that the UK pensions industry is facing a crisis. Reports and surveys highlighting that UK working adults no longer have confidence in the system or plan to stop funding their pensions are featured in the press at an alarming rate. It’s not exactly the sort of news the Government wants to hear, particularly with auto-enrolment just around the corner.
Against the backdrop of a European debt crisis, this month's issue focuses on the latest pension reforms and the challenges faced by the insurance sector. Plus the benefits of expanding into overseas markets.
A round up of relevant news affecting the business sector, including a focus on the high net worth by HMRC, new crisis management guidelines for businesses and a warning on rogue insolvency practitioners.
From 2012 onwards employers will have to ensure that eligible employees are automatically enrolled into a ‘qualifying’ workplace pension scheme. A company’s choice of scheme for auto-enrolment will hinge on a number of, often complicated, decisions. Factors such as company size, employee profile as well as what schemes, if any, the company already offers to employees will need careful consideration. But with complex decisions, comes opportunity.
With the clock ticking on pension reforms, Deborah Benn looks at the issues that companies still need to address and how reforms may also be a catalyst to improve existing schemes.
According to the Association of British Insurers (ABI), the UK insurance industry is the third largest in the world and the largest in Europe. But while its success on the global stage is beyond dispute, the highly global nature of the sector creates additional complications when it comes to negotiating a new regulatory environment ahead.
The UK insurance sector is facing more than it's fair share of regulatory change. Deborah Benn looks at the latest challenges and reports on how the industry is weathering the economic and regulatory storm.
Insurance is a global business which means it's incumbent on all players to cope with the regulatory regimes of multi-jurisdictions. A successful marketing strategy for offshore subsidiaries of UK companies means having to comply with UK domestic regulatory change as well as European and global regulations depending on where products are being sold.
David Kneeshaw, Chief Executive of Royal London's Isle of Man subsidiary, Royal London 360, explains how a plethora of multi-jurisdictional regulation impacts on expansion plans and market strategy.
Businesses in need of finance have had a tough time as banks prove harder to impress with ideas, business and cash flow plans. And while we wait to see if the Government's proposed 'credit easing' plan will help, there are venture capitalists, angels and private equity firms with money to spend if entrepreneurs would care to knock on their doors. But knowing how to make a good pitch is fundamental to achieving financial backing.
James Caan, well known from the BBC’s Dragons’ Den, is Founder and Chairman of the firm Hamilton Bradshaw Venture Partners. Hannah Beecham discovers his particular recipe for success.
Recognised as one of the top five cities for growth prospects in the UK, Leeds' manufacturing sector continues not just to survive, but to thrive. Companies involved in precision manufacturing, waste management, recycling, and renewable energy are all highlighted as internationally acclaimed sectors that can lead the way on the path to growth.
Companies based in Leeds are achieving corporate growth by increasingly diversifying overseas. Insight Out paid a visit to this vibrant city to find out just how it is engineering a global name for itself.
Overfinch’s enhancements attract the custom of many celebrities and sports stars. The company is also achieving success in overseas markets, including China’s burgeoning executive market. Its Xantha edition is offered exclusively for the Chinese market and features what it calls “a stunning pearlescent yellow paint finish, five piece Overfinch body kit with LED daylight running lights.” Autobrokers is owned by Kevin Sloane. He started up the business 20 years ago.
Overfinch is a client of Mazars.
Overfinch has been redefining Range Rover models for the last 40 years. Bought by Autobrokers in 2010, the company is achieving growing success with its customised enhancements, as Hannah Beecham reports.
With the UK economy still a long way from being ‘out of the woods’, one can forgive companies for taking a fortress mentality as they struggle with domestic issues. Yet it may just be the right time to devote some thought to expanding your business overseas. Why? Because while sales figures in the UK may be flat lining, there are overseas markets that are bucking the trend.
For many companies, expanding overseas is a necessity as markets back home dry up. Insight Out maps the route to help your business achieve a successful cross border venture.
While boardroom battles can be pretty messy affairs and often damage a company's reputation, harmonious boards that are not achieving their full potential are equally as problematic. Boards play a vital role in delivering long-term success and if shareholders believe that board members are making decisions that, rightly or wrongly, jeopardise that long-term success, then more than ever they are likely to challenge decisions.
Board evaluation is high on the agenda following a recent report by the Association of British Insurers (ABI). We look at how boards can achieve the right balance and prepare for the challenges ahead.
Former Dragons' Den entrepreneur James Caan warns a packed Mazars Business Club seminar audience away from some of the pitfalls of expansion into international markets so their companies can be sure to gain from these growth economies.
Foreign markets offer a strong incentive to expand abroad. But how do you manage an alien business culture? Entrepreneur James Caan shares his experience at a seminar organised by Mazars.
There are many routes to achieving corporate responsibility and some companies have excelled themselves with local community projects initiated and run by their own workforce. Community support, customer loyalty and a happier workforce are just some of the advantages for companies willing to go the extra mile and put something back into their local communities.
Companies are benefiting all round by getting involved in their local communities. We report on how such initiatives are not only doing great work, but are proving to be a valuable marketing tool.
Most organisations have a vast array of often disparate information from which different reports are collated for multiple end users and committees. The speed and accuracy with which this is achieved can provide a significant competitive advantage. The challenge is how to get the right content to the right people at the right time.
Technology solutions can not only help streamline your business, they can also reduce a company’s costs. We find out about how the dashboard can help companies manage information more effectively.
In July 2011, the FSA published guidance to support validation and evidence of self-assessment for internal model application. The scope of the review is relatively concise, but in practice is proving a challenge as it includes all internal and external data that could have a material impact on the internal model.
The announcement that the implementation date for Solvency II has been pushed back to January 2014 now gives firms the ideal chance to review the quality of data management and validation processes.
Russia’s rising economic power lies predominantly in its might as the world’s largest exporter of natural gas and the second largest exporter of oil. As a result there is a new and growing generation of wealthy Russians boosting demand for luxury goods and financial services and providing opportunities for UK businesses along the way.
Russia’s business star is in the ascendency. As a growing economic force, it is an attractive base for enterprises. We report on how UK companies may profit from this market's growth prospects.
The Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) mis-selling scandal has had an unwelcome knock-on effect for UK insurance brokers. According to the British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA), PPI was a product sold primarily by lenders and credit brokers, but by very few ‘core’ insurance brokers.
The current economic climate is a challenge for insurance brokers, according to the latest survey on insurance brokers from Mazars, so the last thing the sector needs is higher levies.
Proposals put forward include a public/private partnership to be put in place and a cap on the cost people have to pay for long term care. The proposals not only remove the uncertainty of the cost of care, they potentially boost the need for the development of affordable insurance products.
A 3 minute tour through the recommendations of the Dilnot Report, which proposes changes on how to achieve an affordable and sustainable funding system for long term care and support.
A list of the forthcoming Mazars seminars taking place over October and November across the UK. Including a look to the future of financial reporting and useful advice for growing and aspirational businesses.
Find out all you need to know on Mazars’ upcoming events and seminars including why you should attend and how to register for a place.