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Quinn Insurance sale stalls

Quinn Group

The sale of Irish insurer Quinn Insurance, which includes Quinn Health, will not go ahead until after the country's new government is elected. The insurer's administrators say that the timetable had been derailed because of the political environment the country is currently experiencing. It comes just over one month after the administrators said they expected to make an announcement on the company's future in "two to four weeks".


Joint-administrator Michael McAteer reports, "We have completed our work but there are a number of other matters that need to be finalised by other parties before a decision on the sale can be announced. Unfortunately, it would appear that we will not get answers to these matters until after the election. I want to stress that the sale has not been suspended and that this delay is due to the political climate that the country is currently experiencing and not due to lack of interest from the bidders.”


The many bids are understood to have been whittled down to three; a joint-bid between Anglo- Irish Bank and US insurer Liberty Mutual, Zurich, and the family of founder Sean Quinn


The National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA) and the Finance Minister must approve Anglo’s bid. The third proposal from the family of QIL founder Sean Quinn is very unlikely. Anglo-Irish Bank went bust in a spectacular manner and the bank believes that taking over the company is the best way to secure repayment of a €2.8bn debt pile owed by the family of founder Sean Quinn and his family. But with a new party in power, any decision to sell the insurer to a failed state owned bank that has been forced to auction deposits to rival banks and will be eventually wound-down, will be a curious one.

International health insurance news: 1 March 2011