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Two new insurance firms to set up Back  
Assurant Solutions and Danica Pensions have both entered the Irish insurance market in the last month. Both companies are well established international firms that will offer increased competition in the sector.
Assurant Solutions is entering the insurance market with a flexible range of payment protection products, including mortgage payment protection, income protection and loan protection.

Assurant Solutions' operations in Ireland will be supported by a service centre in Cork operated by an affiliate, Assurant Services Ireland Ltd. Established in 1999 as a claims processing centre for US operations, the centre currently employs about 50 people. The Irish subsidiary is part of a global organisation headquartered in the United States, Assurant Inc., that pioneered the introduction of creditor insurance in the 1930s and 1940s, and has been established in the UK since 1972.

Meanwhile, Danica Pension, part of Danske Bank Group and Denmark's largest private life insurance and pensions company will open a subsidiary company in Ireland by the end of 2007. It is still expected that Danica Pension's first product offering will be available in late 2007, with others to follow during 2008. These products will initially be sold through National Irish Bank and therefore enhance the banking products of National Irish Bank.

Danica is the life and pensions arm of Danske Bank, and it is entering the Irish life market two years after Denmark's largest bank acquired National Irish Bank and its Belfast-based sister bank, the Northern. At this stage, the company (Danica Life Limited) has been established and the next critical step is getting the appropriate regulatory approvals.

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