LV= has seen a 14% growth in sales across its retirement business in 2011 with an annual premium equivalent (APE) of £114.3m, up from £100.3m in 2010.
Annuity business fared well in 2011, with an APE of £53.0m, a 20% increase from 2010 where new business levels hit £44.0m.The company says fixed term annuity take-up has increased by 49% year on year.
John Perks, managing director of retirement solutions at LV= expects "further increases in [the annuity] marketplace, as more consumers are aware they can get better deals."
He said the boost in annuity business was partly due to changing demographics as more people reached retirement. He believes there is more popularity around enhanced annuities as a result of PICA's lobbying for the open market option and the ABI's code of conduct.
Pension sales saw an increase of 12% with an APE of £46.7m from £41.6m in 2010.
Perks said LV= is now third in the marketplace for drawdown products, while this year's re-launch of a low-cost personal pension with a pricing structure of 25 bps would give "consumers what they want pricewise."
Meanwhile, equity release figures were down from £90 million of loans issued in 2010 to £85 million last year.
However, Perks said this "was to our plan. We are planning for growth this year so we're targeting higher volumes this year and looking to continue to grow in line with our annuity portfolio. We've done our adviser road-shows and boot-camps recently to help people into the market, we see it as a growth market post RDR so again we're investing in that market place and continuing to grow."
Further innovation is planned across the retirement offering. Perks revealed "exciting things will be coming mid-year" as LV= intends to develop its fixed term annuity proposition to counter more flexible competitors, revamp the investment partners and funds available in its SIPP and try to make annuities easier for advisers to navigate.
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