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Worthington Group (WRN)

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Monday 23 March, 2015

Worthington Group

Pension Fund Litigation Settlement

RNS Number : 2257I
Worthington Group PLC
23 March 2015

Worthington Group plc ("the Company" or "Worthington")

23rd  March 2015


Pension Fund Litigation Settlement

The Company is delighted to announce that Worthington's Pension Fund "the Jerome Group plc Retirement Benefits Plan" has now resolved the legal dispute over £3m of the scheme's cash assets which were placed with solicitors pending an investment in the Rangers Football Club prior to it entering Administration in 2012. Whilst the terms of the resolution are confidential, the immediate positive result of this is that it removes the burden of any ongoing legal cost of this litigation from the Company.

The Company's Pension Fund is managed by a professional independent trustee appointed by the Pension Regulator.

It had originally been the intention of the Company, in order to resolve the risk to the Group from the historic Pension Deficit, to execute a members' Scheme of Arrangement ("SA") which, in simple terms, would have involved introducing a new publicly listed Worthington holding company ("New Worthington or New Worthington Group") above the current Worthington. Existing Worthington ("Old Worthington") would have continued to own all the assets that it previously held, and would have become a subsidiary ("the Subsidiary") of the New Worthington Group. All new acquisitions would have been acquired by New Worthington whilst existing assets would have remained in the Subsidiary, thereby ensuring fair treatment of pensioners whilst also making the Group more attractive to investors and business vendors. The Subsidiary would, in time, have likely been wound up and the Pension Fund would have then entered into the Pension Protection Fund ("PPF"). However, in view both of the resolution above and the scale of the acquisitions that the Company is making - and their expected impact on the Company's profitability going forward - it is no longer the view of the Company's board that a Scheme of Arrangement is required. Whilst the enhanced prospects for the Company is obviously good news for the Company's shareholders, it is also good news for the Company's pensioners because it means that, without the need for the Pension Fund to enter the PPF, they can also share in the success of the Company going forward improving their expected pension payments from the 90% Pension Protection Fund provision to 100% if the Company is as successful as expected going forward. 

The Company expects to be able to update shareholders concerning these acquisitions and its re-listing progress before the end of the month. As part of this progress the Company expects to be able to launch its new website at the same time.  

About Worthington Group Plc ("Worthington")  

Worthington (Stock Exchange LSE: WRN) is a British investment company that  celebrates its 61st anniversary as a London Stock Exchange main market listed company this year. The Company has four areas of investment focus: property, litigation claims, new economy and emerging markets. The Company believes that exceptional shareholder returns can be achieved by utilising its main market Sterling paper to acquire investments in these sectors worldwide.


Note: Forward-looking statements contained in this announcement, including Worthington's strategy and plans, as well as expectations for future revenue and earnings, reflect Worthington's   current views and assumptions with respect to future events and are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions. There are many factors that may cause actual results achieved to differ materially from expectations for future results and expectations that may be expressed in or form an assumption of such forward-looking statements. Such factors include risks related to the day to day business of Worthington, client volatility, sales fluctuations, the general economic climate, political and environment and  other risks,  cancellations,  software failures and interruption to service to customers due to technical problems, acquisition delays  and failure as well as other uncertainties related to the results of Worthington including risks of delays or closure of projects, price falls, currency fluctuations and changes in contract terms, legislation and administrative practices, as well as competition risk and other unforeseen factors. If one or more of such risks or factors of uncertainty were to materialise, or should one or more of the statements provided prove to be incorrect, actual developments may differ materially from the forward-looking statements contained in this announcement.




Charlotte Parham, Media information                           Tel: +44 203 291 1872

or email: [email protected] 

PD Cosec - Company Secretary                                        Tel: +44 208 940 0963


Statement ends.


This information is provided by RNS
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