Posted on Aug 03, 2010 by Sergio Ulloa
RSA Insurance Group plc (RSA) has recently announced it has acquired 123 Money Limited (123.ie), a leading direct distributor of personal insurance products in Ireland, with around 170,000 policyholders. 123.ie generated almost EUR 60 million (GBP 50 million) in the fiscal year that ended on 31 March 2010. With this acquisition, RSA will become the second largest general insurer in Ireland.
Using online and telephone sales as their main distribution channels, 123.ie offers motor, home, pet and travel insurance. 123.ie is estimated to hold gross assets of almost EUR 20 million (GBP 17 million), and RSA will pay EUR 65 million (GBP 54million) in cash.
RSA views the acquisition of 123.ie as complementary to their existing intermediated distribution capability, and a boost to their direct presence to give them a leading position in the Irish insurance market.
RSA is excited about the synergy created by combining the strong brand identity of 123.ie with the financial strength and recognised technical expertise of RSA, and feel confident of achieving good growth prospects going forward. With the acquisition of 123.ie, RSA estimates an advancement of two positions in the market by premium volumes, from their current Number 4 position, to Number 2.
In comparison to the UK insurance market, the Irish market is perceived by RSA as being competitive, with a higher level of consolidation. RSA also noted that the recent problems of the Irish economy had a more detrimental effect on commercial insurance, than on business related to the personal lines insurance segment.
The deal is still subject to the corresponding regulatory approval by the relevant Irish authorities.
Insurance Companies mentioned:
RSA has a proud heritage dating back almost 300 years. The current company structure was created in 1996 following the merger of two of the largest insurance companies in the UK, Royal Insurance and Sun Alliance. In 2008 the company shortened their name to RSA and simplified and refreshed their corporate brand. RSA has over 20 million customers worldwide. The Group currently manages GBP 14.3 billion of investments. RSA is a member of the FTSE4Good Index. RSA employs around 21,000 people worldwide.
123.ie was founded in 2002. By focusing on the internet and supported by a friendly, efficient call centre 123.ie works hard at lowering costs and passing these savings onto Irish consumers. 123.ie is now one of the fastest growing companies in Ireland, now employing almost 200 staff at their call centre in Dublin. 123.ie offers home insurance, car insurance, life assurance, mortgage protection, travel and pet insurance.