Health insurer records €1.85m loss last year

The country’s second largest health insurer last year went into the red after a drop in revenues.

Accounts lodged by Laya Healthcare Ltd with the Companies Registration Office shows the firm — then known as Quinn Healthcare Ltd — recorded a pre-tax loss of €1.85m last year following a €1.9m pre-tax profit in 2010.

Revenues at the firm dropped 16% from €27.8m to €23.4m.

The Cork-headquartered insurer was the subject of a management buy-out in December with the support of an underwriter owned by reinsurance giant Swiss Re.

The business was rebranded in May of this year to become Laya Healthcare. The firm has almost 450,000 customers.

Commenting on the 2011 performance yesterday, managing director Dónal Clancy said: “2011 was an extremely challenging year for Quinn Healthcare Ltd. However, following the launch of Laya Healthcare in May 2012, our business continues to grow in a declining market and we are very excited about our future as Laya Healthcare.”

The firm confirmed that the loss was primarily driven by a reduction in commission receivable from its underwriter Quinn Insurance Ltd (Under Administration) which was under administration throughout 2011. The commission income accounts for 90% of the revenues.

Asked does the firm anticipate a return to profit this year, a Laya Healthcare spokeswoman said: “Since its launch in May 2012, Laya Healthcare continues to gain members in a declining market. Currently the second largest health insurance provider in the market, Laya Healthcare is focused on continuing to grow its membership base and product offering.”

Numbers employed by the firm last year increased from 324 to 334. In May, Laya announced a further 100 jobs, 30 of which have been filled, with a further eight to be filled before the end of the year.

The spokeswoman said: “We would hope to continue to grow our team in line with business needs — particularly in the areas of customer service and business development.”

The firm recorded an operating loss of €2.5m in 2011 following an operating profit of €3.4m in 2010. The losses were reduced with combined finance and interest income of €505,585. The firm’s accumulated profits last year stood at €543,029.

The filings also state that Laya executed a new rental lease which resulted in a significant reduction in lease costs going forward.

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