Liverpool Victoria is expanding its presence in the group protection market with the launch of group life and critical-illness cover products in November.
The move is the first major protection expansion that the friendly society has made since its acquisition of Permanent Insurance was finalised in February. It says this is an opportune time to get into both markets as employers are reviewing benefit packages due to stakeholder.
The products will be targeted at IFAs who are already active in the corporate market and brokers looking for new income streams.
The group life market , was worth Â£650m in 2000, according to reinsurer GE Frankona. The biggest players by number of policies sold are Royal & Sun Alliance, AIG Life, Swiss Life, Legal & General and Canada Life.
Group critical-illness cover is a much smaller market, worth only Â£10m last year. The major providers by number of schemes are Swiss Life, Unum, Royal & Sun Alliance, Scottish Equitable and Legal & General.
Liverpool Victoria head of IFA marketing Rod Macdonald says: “We will be looking to target the IFAs already in the group market but also looking at IFAs looking at new avenues to try and move them into the group market.”
IFA Portfolio Insurance Consultancy principal Brian Lentz says: “It is still an infant market. Group critical-illness cover has a long way to go. Right now, employers are looking at their benefit arrangements because of stakeholder and Permanent has always been a major player in the protection market so I think it is a good move.”