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EasyJet tycoon sets a course for IFA market

The owner of cut-price airline EasyJet, entrepreneur Stelios Haji-Ioannou,

is entering the life and pension market with an online virtual IFA

codenamed EasyLife.

The move by EasyJet parent EasyGroup will see term insurance sold through

its new portal Easy.com from August and will rival online providers The

Exchange and Misys.

EasyLife will initially sell term insurance via the website but is likely

to expand the operation to other products using software from

Coventry-based e-commerce specialist Synaptic Systems.

Representatives from major life offices, including Norwich Union,

Permanent Insurance and Standard Life, attendeda secret meeting at Luton

airport early this week.

CGU, Legal & General and Scottish Provident have confirmed they are in

preliminary talks with EasyGroup about selling their products through its

proposed new portal.

Synaptic says it is linking up with EasyLife to provide the software

needed to search for products and transact business on the website.

EasyLife will be regulated by the FSA.

Synaptic e-commerce business development manager Karl Beaton says: “We are

in the process of signing upa number of providers. Weare currently looking

at the criteria of possible policies.”

An EasyLife spokesman says: “EasyLife will be an online IFA built around

comparative information which the customer will use to make informed

product selections. We are in talks with a number of providers on how best

to deliver this.”

CGU spokeswoman Fran Elliott says: “The owner of EasyGroup is a well-known

entrepreneur who recognises the strength of brands and the value of selling

life insurance as an online commodity.

“We, like other providers, are interested in exploring new opportunities

and this is another variation on the distribution channel.”

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