Challenger has announced record retail annuity sales of $2.8 billion, which the firm says has been driven through advisers supporting its annuity products.
Speaking to ifa, Challenger chief executive Brian Benari said the firm has seen “incredible growth” and there are people out there looking for a product that is going to support them in retirement.
“Challenger has recorded five straight years of retail annuity sales growth, and has unambiguous expansion prospects,” Mr Benari said.
“A great majority of our sales come through third party advisers,” Mr Benari said. “What we are seeing is the advisers are definitely supporting this product.
“It is incredible growth and the driver of that is [that] there are people out there and they are looking for product that is going to give them a reliable [and] dependable income stream for the rest of their life,” he said.
Mr Benari said Challenger had also experienced “phenomenal growth” of its life-time annuity sales, which had increased to $613 million over a few years.
“In 2012, we wrote $47 million worth of lifetime annuities, in 2013 we wrote $70 million, in 2014 we have written $613 million worth of lifetime annuities and that equates to 22 per cent of the total sales,” Me Benari said.
Challenger also said its retail annuity book grew by 12.5 per cent to $887 million, which slightly exceeded its revised guidance range of 10 to 12 per cent.
“Retirees have voted with their wallets because they saw that annuities didn’t miss a beat during the GFC,” Mr Benari said.
“They want to complement the market exposure of account-based pensions with the security and reliability of guaranteed lifetime income.”
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