It's always nice to start the morning with a tale of a happy ending, isn't it?
JRP Group, the result of the merger between Just Retirement Group and Partnership Assurance, started trading on the London Stock Exchange this morning.
The newly-formed company, which has assets under management of more than £15bn, began its first day of trading with a market cap of £1.4bn.
"I am delighted the merger process between Just Retirement and Partnership has been concluded and JRP Group plc is now established," said Rodney Cook, group chief executive of JRP Group. "As we launch, we are optimistic that our new company will use the outstanding intellectual property we have developed, together with our multi-channel distribution assets and market leading service to positively disrupt markets to deliver improved value to our customers."
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Approval for the all-share merger, which was announced last August, was granted by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority last month.
When the deal was initially revealed last year, shares in Partnership jumped up almost nine per cent, while shares in Just Retirement inched up around two per cent.
John Baines, principal at Aon Hewitt, remarked: "The completion of the merger is welcome news for schemes, removing any uncertainty since this was first announced last August. It will be interesting to see the impact on pricing of less competition, but we continue to see a very healthy level of competitiveness across the bulk annuity market with some pensioner pricing as attractive as it has been for four years."