Irish Life to enter Irish health insurance market

Acquisition of Aviva Health and GloHealth will give new brand 21% share of the market

Chief executive of the Irish Life Group, David Harney: “Through the acquisition of these two very strong existing businesses...we will create a significant new force in the Irish health insurance market.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Chief executive of the Irish Life Group, David Harney: “Through the acquisition of these two very strong existing businesses...we will create a significant new force in the Irish health insurance market.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

 

Irish Life Health has become the latest brand to enter the Republic’s health insurance market after Irish Life Group completed the necessary transactions to acquire Aviva Health and assume complete control of GloHealth, where it previously had a 49 per cent shareholding.

While the merger of two of the four health insurance providers in the State will see a significant reduction in the alternatives open to Irish consumers, the new company insisted the development was good for the market as a whole.

The new brand has pledged to grow the combined customer base of the two insurers, who between them had of 420,000 customers and a 21 per cent share of the market.

All existing customers of both companies will retain the benefits of their health insurance cover and do not need to take any action and over the course of the next month or so, Aviva Health will begin rebranding to Irish Life Health.

Renewal of policies

From later this year GloHealth customers will be asked to join Irish Life Health as their policies come up for renewal. All customers will be communicated with well in advance of any change.

“Through the acquisition of these two very strong existing businesses, backed by the market knowledge and financial strength of Irish Life, we will create a significant new force in the Irish health insurance market,” promised the chief executive of the Irish Life Group, David Harney.

“It is our intention that Irish Life Health will become the benchmark for health insurance in Ireland, ” he said.

Positive development

The current chief executive of GloHealth, Jim Dowdall, is to become the managing director of Irish Life Health.

Mr Dowdall described the establishment of Irish Life Health as a very positive development for customers.

“By bringing together the in-depth expertise of our teams from Aviva Health, GloHealth and Irish Life our existing and new customers can always be sure that they have great value health insurance plans with cover that is relevant to their needs,” he said.

All 160 employees of Aviva Health and GloHealth will move to the Irish Life campus.