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Zurich set to unify UK life firms

The restructure is expected to take place on January 1, 2005 when the combined group will be renamed Zurich Assurance.

The businesses which will be brought together in the single operation are Allied Dunbar, Eagle Star, Zurich, City of London Insurance Company and Pilot Assurance Company.

Zurich says planholders&#39 terms and conditions will stay the same.

Bringing together the UK life businesses is part of the group&#39s objective to focus on Zurich as one international brand and raise its profile in the UK.

The only company that will stay outside the new body is Sterling, Zurich&#39s investment brand, which will continue to operate using its own brand on new and existing products.

Zurich has been working in close collaboration with the FSA and an independent exp-ert from consulting actuaries Watson Wyatt on protecting customers&#39 interests.

The transfer of insurance company business from one company to another comes under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000.

The restructuring requires court approval, with the first hearing last week followed by a second hearing in December.

Information packs will be sent out to planholders giving full details of the proposal during October.

Zurich media relations consultant Jon Atkins says: “This is the next stage in the journey towards a more comprehensive use of the Zurich brand in the UK.”

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