The Pension Protection Fund (PPF) is a “lifeboat” of last resort for the pension plans of failed companies. Roughly 148 of the 868 schemes it manages are from “pre-pack” administrations.
A further 20 schemes are currently being processed.These secretive transactions allow businesses to be sold even as they are declared insolvent.
Some 53,000 workers’ pensions are affected.
The Financial Times newspaper found that two out of three pre-pack schemes entering the PPF involved selling to existing owners or directors.
Companies include the turkey producer Bernard Matthews, the bed company Silentnight and the textile firm Bonas.