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TAL to absorb Asteron retail business

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TAL is to realign Asteron’s adviser-focused life insurance business with its own following a strategic review.

The review focused on creating a single, market-leading life insurer. Asteron’s retail products will be taken off the market to new customers from July 1.

Job losses are expected in the retail channel across both businesses, although numbers are not yet known. New roles will be created, but with a reduction in headcount overall, TAL says.

“We believe it is in our customers and advisers’ best interest not to offer two similar retail propositions in the retail advised market,” TAL CEO Brett Clark said.

“Having one retail adviser proposition gives clarity to the market, creates a simpler business structure and a more efficient service model, which allows us to provide better-value propositions for customers and our adviser partners.”

Asteron retail life products will remain open for current customers, the insurer says.

TAL has appointed former REST Super executive Andrew Howard as COO to lead the integration.

The deal included a 20-year distribution agreement with Asteron’s former owner Suncorp to offer life products through Suncorp channels.