APG and The Glue establish pensions technology firm Hyfen

04 September 2020 Consultancy.eu

APG has teamed up with The Glue to establish Hyfen, a spin-off firm that specialises in digital innovation and automation of pension operations.

The founding team of Hyfen was born a few years ago internally within APG, with €524 billion in assets the largest pension fund of the Netherlands. As part of the company’s digital innovation agenda, APG commissioned a team to improve the way pension values were transferred to and from its own funds.

As it stands, executing the transfer of pension value from one fund or trustee to another is a time-consuming and costly process. Meanwhile, for pension holders, the process is tedious and can be complicated. Chasing the desire to streamline the process while enhancing customer experience, the Hyfen team developed Mijnwaardeoverdracht.nl.

This product takes a digitised and industrywide approach to pension value transfers, enabling holders to complete the full process online in a simple manner. Behind the scenes, the improvement is driven by automation – including blockchain-powered technology – and intercompany collaboration between several large pension providers in the country.

APG and The Glue establish pensions technology firm Hyfen

Mijnwaardeoverdracht.nl is currently being implemented by a first batch of four major customers, including APG. Later this year, a broader go-live will take place in cooperation with more industry players. 

Having nurtured the early success of Hyfen, APG’s management team has now decided to spin-off the entity, to enable the unit to serve other parties without any direct conflict of interests and accelerate its growth. Gerard van Olphen, Chairman of the Executive Board of APG said: “By positioning Hyfen remotely, our pension fund clients and their participants continue to benefit from the knowledge and skills of these professionals – while at the same time giving other pension funds and participants access to their innovative services.”

Hyfen’s 10-strong team, led by director Hidde Terpoorten, is backed by majority shareholder The Glue, itself a spin-off of pan-European financial services consulting firm Projective. The Glue, backed by Projective, has been advising and supporting the team and has been retained by APG and Hyfen as a trusted partner. 

Majority shareholder: The Glue

Paul Grimbers, the CEO of the Glue, explained why the firm joined the venture: “Much remains to be done on the European playing field of pension service providers. By joining forces and focusing on the creation of platforms with innovative data exchange, we want to deliver added value in this domain.” 

The joining of forces will see Hyfen benefit from The Glue’s ecosystem of innovation and technology partners, which includes talent incubator Exellys and venture capital investor Smartfin, as well as the firm’s deep expertise in the financial services sector. 

For Projective, the deal follows on similar such partnerships across Europe. Corjan Mol, the Managing Partner of Projective in the Netherlands, said that he is delighted by this opportunity to bringing the tried-and-tested approach to the Dutch market. “We are proud to expand our ecosystem in the Netherlands. Hyfen embodies the key pillars of our vision: great people, innovation, collaboration, digitisation, platforming and investing in a better future.”

In parallel to expanding Mijnwaardeoverdracht.nl, Hyfen and The Glue are currently exploring “other new opportunities” to improve the mechanics of the pensions sector.