Steve Bee, the self-styled pensions guru who has for decades been one of the industry’s most high profile pundits and most influential thinkers, says he is no longer an expert on the subject.
Bee says he can no longer consider himself a genuine pension guru as he does not have the time to fulfill the role properly, as he is focusing on building the Paradigm Pensions business he founded in 2010. Paradigm Pensions is rolling out a range of employer- and employee-facing services, including payroll services and corporate wrap, throughout this year.
Bee’s public profile over the last two decades established him as arguably the most high profile of a very small group of pension experts known in the industry as ‘gurus’.
Bee has become famous for bringing entertainment into the communication of otherwise dry pensions information, through his Pensions Guru cartoons, his use of new media and performances to IFAs while head of pensions at Prudential and pension strategist at Royal London that borrowed themes from the world of rock and roll.
His ground-breaking lobbying work around the disincentive to save caused by means-testing saw him give a presentation at 10 Downing Street with marker pen and paper. Bee has also arguably taken the pensions message further into the realm of TV light entertainment than anyone else with his robust 1990s appearance on Jeremy Clarkson’s ‘Clarkson’ show.
But Bee says the time he is having to devote to his new group pension and HR services business, which he is aiming to bring to 1m employees within five years, means he is no longer in a position to be considered a fully-fledged pension guru.
Bee says: ‘I don’t think I am a pension expert any more. I am not the person I was five, 10 or 20 years ago. I am building a business now. As for Pension Guru, my alter-ego on Twitter, the day will come when I might have to get a co-writer to help me with it. I did the pension guru thing long enough, I did my bit.’