Your partner for pension plans

VEDRA Pensions is a specialist in the takeover and management of existing defined benefit pension obligations.

VEDRA Pensions’ origin dates back to its first acquisition of pension plans of the former AEG Telefunken Nachrichtentechnik, a former subsidiary of Bosch, in 2016. Since then, VEDRA Pensions has positioned itself as a first mover in the German market with innovative and pragmatic solutions, such as the first acquisition of pension liabilities by way of a carve-out of a listed company and the first acquisition of pension liabilities in a private equity M&A context. With this, VEDRA Pension has created the basis for pension risk transfers in Germany – a well-established instrument for business leaders in both the UK as well as the US. VEDRA Pensions works with carefully selected experts to achieve the best possible results for our clients and pension beneficiaries.

We serve almost

0

beneficiaries.

We have taken over responsibility for more than

0

million € in payment obligations to date.

We have paid out more than

0

million € in pensions since our foundation in 2016

What problems do we solve?

Now more than ever, companies face many a number of problems and challenges related to pension liabilities:

  • Increasing life expectancy leads to longer pension payment streams

  • With changing demographics, the number of pensioners often already exceeds the current workforce, so that actual pensions payments outweigh the internal financing nature of pension accruals

  • Future pension payments increase due to inflation and salary trends

  • Balance sheet value as the present value of future pension payments fluctuates heavily with movements in interest rates

All these factors lead to an increased burden of pension provisions on corporate financial flexibility and balance sheets. Pension payments are more uncertain and thus subject to risk than bonds or loans. Balance sheet ratios such as equity ratios or cash flow figures fluctuate accordingly.

When is a pension buy-out appealing?

Companies can transfer the risks of existing pension obligations / liabilities to relieve the balance sheet from pension provisions and achieve a reduction in the risks inevitably associated with these pension provisions. Risks include both exposure to macroeconomic parameter like interest rates and inflation as well as shifts in life expectancy or changes of the regulatory environment.

Pension obligations can thus affect the current enterprise value, but also the future prospects of many companies.

Pension buy-outs can therefore create value in a number of situations:

How can we assist?

As one possible solution to the described challenges, a buy-out means a legally and economically exempting transfer of the risks associated with the pension liability.

The VEDRA model offers you a solid and legally secure solution through an adequate initial funding of the pension liability. In addition, we and our experts ensure seamless support for you during implementation.

The transfer of pension obligations via a pensioner company to a pension specialist frees the company balance sheet from the risks mentioned above and hence increases its financial planning security.

But your stakeholders are not forgotten either. Our clients benefit from our profound understanding of the communication needs of all stakeholders, be they investors, pensioners, workers councils or employees. Over the last years, we have built up the expertise to present the pros and cons for the respective group of stakeholders, benchmarked versus the status quo and the stakeholder group’s objectives. Because as a pension liability underwriting specialist, we have a high level of experience and proven competence in pension-specific investment and risk management. VEDRA Pensions hereby coordinates all the specialists involved.

Involvement and collaboration in associations and institutions

At VEDRA, we believe in innovation and recognise the importance of providing comprehensive, accurate and unbiased information.

As a company, we are committed to the industry in which we operate and to providing and communicating the necessary expertise.

Pension Buy-out - De-risking

If a company provides pension benefits, it is required to include them in the balance sheet and establish provisions accordingly. These provisions are determined based on actuarial calculations including factors such as discount rate, inflation, and longevity. These pension liabilities can either be assigned to dedicated assets or they are covered by the balance sheet in general.

In a pension buy-out, the objective is to separate these pension liabilities along with the corresponding financial resources and move those from the balance sheet of the company.

Contact

For companies

Do you would like to know more about the possibilities for risk transfer of pension liabilities and pension buy-outs? Feel free to write to us or give us a call.

For pension beneficiaries

If you have any questions about your pension scheme, we will be happy to help!

Please send us an email or give us a call

Contact form

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Michael Christner

Managing Director

  • Michael Christner has over 20 years of experience in capital markets, M&A and capital markets transactions of financial services companies.
  • Mr Christner started his career in investment banking at Morgan Stanley in London. Here he focused on advising financial services companies on M&A and capital markets transactions.
  • In 2007, he joined the private equity investor J.C. Flowers, where his responsibilities included the analysis and negotiation of investments in financial services providers.
  • During his time at J.C. Flowers, Michael Christner was also a member of numerous supervisory boards and corresponding committees, for example at the Belgian insurance company Fidea, the Dutch NIBC Bank and HCOB in Germany.
  • He was Chairman of the Supervisory Board and later CEO of Vall Banc in Andorra, as well as Division Manager at HCOB in Hamburg.
  • His activities in regulated financial companies were subject to approval by supervisory authorities in the respective countries, including BaFin, the Dutch Central Bank or the ECB.
  • Michael Christner holds a degree in business informatics with a focus on finance from the University of Cologne and received a scholarship from the German Academic Scholarship Foundation (Studienstiftung).

Tilo Kraus

Managing Director

  • Mr Kraus has over 20 years of corporate finance, capital market and risk management experience.
  • Tilo Kraus started his career in finance at the end of 1999, alongside his studies, at the Munich-based private equity house VCM Venture Capital Management.
  • He then moved to the London office of UBS Investment Bank, where he was most recently responsible for the debt capital and risk management business with German, Austrian and Dutch companies.
  • In 2009, Kraus moved to IKB Deutsche Industriebank as part of the company's repositioning, heading the bank's financial markets division.
  • Following this, Tilo Kraus worked as divisional head for Hamburg Commercial Bank from 2019 and was entrusted with the management of the institutional client coverage teams as well as the syndication and structuring business as part of the bank's transformation.
  • Tilo Kraus holds a degree in business administration from the University of Munich and a degree in economics from the Fernuniversität Hagen and holds a Master's degree from the University of Warwick and an MBA from the University of Chicago. He is a CFA Charterholder.

Christian Petersmann

Managing Director

  • Christian Petersmann has over 20 years of experience in M&A, capital markets/investment and as an entrepreneur.
  • He started his career in investment banking at Morgan Stanley; initially in London with a focus on advising on M&A and capital markets transactions of financial services firms in the corporate finance area later in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
  • Christian Petersmann then joined the investment managers Highbridge/Zwirn and Silverpoint Capital, where he was jointly responsible for building up the European and German investment business. This included the identification and analysis of investment opportunities and their implementation in the capital market.
  • In 2007, together with Konstantin Stoyanov, he founded the multi-family office Crown Ocean Capital, which ultimately led to the foundation of the VEDRA Group.
  • Christian Petersmann holds a degree in business administration from the University of Cologne and was awarded the Heinz-Kaut Prize as the best student of his year. During his studies, he spent a year as a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Miami where he earned an MBA.

Pierre de Weck

Chairman of the Advisory Board

  • In total, Pierre de Weck has over 40 years of management, corporate finance capital markets and investment management experience.
  • From 2002 to 2012, as Global Head Private Wealth Management, he led sales and advisory services for high net worth clients at Deutsche Bank.
  • Pierre de Weck worked 17 years for UBS in Switzerland and was a member of the Group Executive Board in various management positions.
  • He began his banking career in 1976 at the Swiss branch of Citi Bank.
  • He was a member of the supervisory boards of Rhodia SA and Clariant AG.
  • To date, the Fribourg-born Swiss is a member of the Board of Directors of Bank of America.
  • In addition to his work for VEDRA Pensions, de Weck also advises financial institutions such as the US company General Atlantic and the private equity house Piton Capital in Amsterdam.

Wilhelm von Haller

Chairman of the Investment Committee

  • Wilhelm von Haller has 35 years of management, corporate finance, capital market and investment management experience.
  • After studying business administration at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich, Mr von Haller worked for the Bavarian Landesbank from 1980. Here he completed a trainee programme and from 1981 worked in the syndicated loan department, which he headed from 1984.
  • In 1986, Mr von Haller moved to Deutsche Bank AG. Until 1990, he was responsible for the corporate client business, corporate groups and major clients, after which he was responsible for the corporate client division in the Chemnitz branch as a member of the management.
  • After the takeover of the Sal. Oppenheim bank in 2009, he was appointed general representative there and took over the chairmanship of the company's executive board.
  • He later served on the Executive Board of Deutsche Bank Privat- und Geschäftskunden AG. As a member of the Executive Board, he was responsible for the management of the company.
  • Mr Haller von Hallerstein is on the Supervisory Board of Nolte GmbH & Co. KGaA.
  • Other appointments include: Supervisory Board HQ Trust, the Multi-Family Office of the Harald Quandt family and CFO of Lysando AG.

Eddy Verbiest

Senior Advisor

  • Overall, Eddy Verbiest has 30 years of experience in asset liability management and treasury.
  • In the course of his career, he has worked for various insurance companies and financial service providers such as Fidea, Baloise Insurance or ING Investment Management.
  • In his last management position at Fidea, a Belgian insurance company spun off from KBC Group and now part of Baloise Group, Eddy Verbiest was responsible for the development of the asset management function and also for regulatory reporting.
  • Dr. Eddy Verbiest holds a PhD in nuclear physics from KU Leuven and is involved in mathematical modelling applied to asset allocation and risk management for insurance companies and pension funds.

Siegbert Weissbrodt

Advisory Board

  • In total, Mr Weissbrodt has more than 25 years of management experience in the fields of human resources, organizational development and restructuring.
  • Most recently, he was Head of Human Resources at the DEKA Group in Frankfurt am Main. In this role, he was primarily responsible for company pension issues, including the management of internal funds for the coverage of pension obligations.
  • Before joining the DEKA Group, Mr Weissbrodt was Head of Human Resources at NordLB. This role included acting as one trustee of the company's UK pension schemes.
  • After completing his training, he started his career as a department head at Helaba.
  • Siegbert Weissbrodt has extensive experience in negotiations between management and works councils and is a certified mediator under the German Mediation Act.

Oskar Nilner

Head of Operations

  • Oskar Nilner has over 20 years of experience in wealth management and the private markets industry
  • Mr. Nilner started his career in debt collection at Hoist Kreditverwaltung in Duisburg. Starting as a Management Trainee, he evolved to head up portfolio acquisitions for the group.
  • In 2003 Mr. Nilner returned to Monaco to join Banca del Gottardo and in 2006 joined Credit Suisse Private Banking in wealth management, always targeting the Scandinavian market.
  • During his time at Credit Suisse, Oskar Nilner was chosen for the Emerging Leaders Program to later join the banks Cross Divisional Talent program, fast-tracking him to a position with the UHNW team in Singapore, servicing the banks’ European clientele banking in Asia.
  • In 2014 Oskar Nilner joined the Private Investment Group, Crown Ocean Capital, where he heads up operations.
  • Oskar Nilner has held numerous board positions across the globe and equally headed up the Monaco office of the Indonesian Asset Manager, Syailendra 2015-2016.
  • His activities in regulated financial companies were subject to approval by supervisory authorities in the respective countries, including MAS in Singapore and CCAF in Monaco.
  • Oskar Nilner holds a degree in business administration with a specialization in finance from the International University of Monaco, graduating Suma Cum Lauda.

Nicole Ziegler

Marketing - Kommunikation

  • Nicole Ziegler verfügt über mehr als 20 Jahre Erfahrung in den Bereichen Kommunikation/Marketing sowie Business Development.
  • Zuletzt war sie als Senior Consultant bei der GFD-Gesellschaft für Finanzkommunikation tätig.
  • Zuvor war sie als Business Development Managerin in verschiedenen internationalen Wirtschaftskanzleien wie White & Case oder Clifford Chance tätig.
  • Davor war sie als Director Marketing and Communication bei AIG Financial Services und AIG Europe für die europaweite Marketing- und Kommunikationsstrategie verantwortlich.
  • Nicole hat an der Universität Mannheim Germanistik und Geschichte studiert (Abschluss Staatsexamen) und anschließend an der Technischen Universität Chemnitz (TuCED) ihren Master gemacht.