STANDARD Life Aberdeen bosses have made a persuasive case for the company to shift its focus from businesses such as selling pensions on to investment management but it could take some time to deliver the benefits expected.

The company won a resounding yes from investors yesterday for a £3.2bn deal to sell its UK and European insurance business to Phoenix, which directors think represents a landmark in its evolution.

Read more: Standard Life Aberdeen wins backing for transformational £3.2bn sale of pensions arm

The sale will allow the company to realise value from what it sees a pretty mature business while retaining an interest in any growth Phoenix can achieve from it.

Standard Life Aberdeen will be able to return £1.75 billion to investors and beef up its balance sheet.

Yet the company’s recent share price performance has been disappointing, despite directors clinching the Phoenix deal within months of the group being formed through the £11bn merger of Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management.

Chairman Sir Gerry Grimstone said yesterday the market is reluctant to attribute value to deals until their benefits have been realised.He is confident the price will improve in coming months.

But, offering fresh justification for the company’s controversial dual chief executive structure he noted Standard Life Aberdeen must now finish integrating two bumper asset management operations while demerging a big insurance operation.

Funds flows suffered by the investment management business recently suggest the new group has suffered some teething problems.