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Standard Life may exit an independent Scotland

by Robert St George on Feb 27, 2014 at 07:59

Standard Life may exit an independent Scotland

Standard Life has begun preparatory work for moving operations from Scotland to England ahead of September’s independence vote.

The group cited as causes for concern the uncertainties over ‘material issues’ including the currency an independent Scotland would use, Scotland’s membership of the European Union, and potential changes to regulation and taxation.

Standard Life therefore confirmed that it had started work as ‘a precautionary measure’ to establish additional registered companies to operate outside Scotland, into which it could transfer parts of its operations if it was necessary to do so.

Chairman Gerry Grimstone (pictured) stressed that Standard Life was ‘strictly apolitical’ and would not give any views on how people should vote. ‘Equally, as one of the largest companies headquartered and based in Scotland, it is appropriate that we have carefully thought through the potential consequences if Scotland were to become an independent nation,’ he added.

Standard Life, which has been based in Scotland for 189 years, also reported its full results for 2013 at the group level.

Assets under administration rose by 12% to £244 billion, driven by net inflows that soared by 92% in 2013 to £9.6 billion.

The company also hiked its final dividend by 8% to 10.58p, equivalent to a total pay-out of £375 million for the year.

5 comments so far. Why not have your say?

Neil K

Feb 27, 2014 at 08:35

I'm English so this shouldn't concern me, but sure if I was Scottish bullying by big business and Eton educated English politicians would make me desperate to vote for an independant Scotland.

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Small business owner

Feb 27, 2014 at 08:56

I can't see what difference a politician's school makes? Would it be better if they had gone to Glenalmond or Gordonston? This is the seat of the problem with the Scottish Rob Roy mentality. I am Scottish by the way but I live in England and consider myself to be British and I intend to remain so.

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Feb 27, 2014 at 09:00

Educated is the most important word in your comment Neil.

I am Scottish. I have grave concerns about independence and no one in the SNP camp is able to answer any of them. When faced with any questioning on the detail of independence they cry "scaremongering" and ignore the question.

I fail to see how any sensible and relatively bright person can be in the Yes to independence campaign unless they are a blinkered nationalist or republican or driven by other more undesirable motivations

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Martin Ashworth

Feb 27, 2014 at 09:37

So much for Salmonds idea of making Financial Services a major employer in any post -independence Scotland. It is all about himself and personal empowerment. You only need to look at the Republic of Ireland and Iceland to see where an Independent Scotland would be in 20 years time - Bust.

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Wings of a Sparrow

Feb 27, 2014 at 17:17

Hi Basty, I'm in the Yes camp having listened to all the debates I can & read the "Scotland's Future" White Paper. I like to think of myself as reasonably bright and am certainly neither "blinkered" nor "republican. For a country not to want to govern itself is illogical. To condemn itself to be governed by a Conservative party for which it will never vote is even more so. There is no doubt that Scotland is well able to be a successful independent nation - even the Better Together campaigners agree that is the case. Personally I believe that should push come to shove George Osborne will have to take a more pragmatic view of the currency (in the interests of the remainder of the UK) and we will see a shared currency. In that case, no way will Standard Life move south of the border. And just on Standard Life, it is well to remember that they made similar noises before the vote on devolution, even writing to all their staff to warn of the dangers. Did they move? Well, funnily enough.....................

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