Friday, 19 June 2009

Xafinity eyes further acquisitions

(By Anthony Miller – Friday 19th June 2009 7:45am). It was only with his tongue partly in his cheek that pensions management specialist firm Xafinity’s CEO, Tim Robinson, referred to themselves as “the viable alternative to Capita”! After all, Xafinity is among the top players in occupational pensions management and regularly meets the UK BPO market leader in head-to-head battle.

We outlined Xafinity’s rich heritage late last year (see Xafinity and public sector pensions) just after they had been (unfairly, in our opinion) lambasted in the media for their role in the public sector pensions overpayment saga. That’s well behind them now, and we were pleased to see Xafinity edge in to our UK SITS Top 50 rankings for the first time this year (see our new CompanyViews rankings report). Xafinity’s largest business unit, accounting for two-thirds of its £135m revenues, is its Paymaster division, headed by Paul Bingham, with whom we have had a long association throughout his career at a number of leading players including Origin even before it was part of Atos.

We will talk more about Xafinity in later postings, but it appeared to me that their combination of consulting, packaged software and BPO propositions, all focused on the occupational pensions market, makes great sense. They acquired specialist player Hazel Carr last April, and are on the lookout for further deals to boost scale and scope. Indeed, in a highly fragmented UK pensions management market, with an estimated asset value of some £2,100b (excluding State pensions!), there has surely got to be plenty of room for Xafinity to manoeuvre.

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