Divide and pool

UK retailer WH Smith's decision to separate news distribution and retail businesses into two distinct arms has sparked an innovative move to split its pension fund along similar lines, making it the first company to take advantage of a change in legislation at the start of 2006.

The move by WH Smith will see its £860 million fund split into two separate pools which will be aligned as closely as possible to the new businesses and will be administered by a single set of trustees. Essentially be