Hazell Carr was set up in the wake of the pensions mis-selling scandal of the early 1990s. The insurance companies that had sold the pensions had to calculate any loss of potential benefit to customers who might be affected. Hazell Carr was founded in 1997 by John Edwards, Graham Hazell and David Carr. It took on the job of reviewing pension transactions for insurers, employing top actuaries highly paid to ‘get their calculations right first time’. This proved cheaper in the long run for clients. But with the wind-down of the pensions review set for the middle of next year, Hazell Carr has to diversify. ‘If we don’t branch out, we will go from being a large company to a small company quickly,’ says Edwards. The firm’s new business developments include a placement service for actuaries, a pensions consultancy and, after recent legislation on pensions and divorce, an advisory service for solicitors on pension splitting. For this Hazell Carr recently acquired a Scottish company. Based in Abingdon, Oxfordshire, with offices in Swindon, Newport and London, the company employs freelance actuaries who work from home. Sales increased 104% a year from £5.3m in 1997 to £45.2m in 2000, when it had 99 staff. Hazell Carr was the top performer in this year’s Profit Track 100, which uncovers Britain’s fastest-growing private companies by profit.
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