Irish Life & Permanent

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Irish Life and Permanent plc




Phone: 1010 +35 3 (0) 1 704 1010
Fax: +35 3 (0) 1 704 1900
Address: Irish Life Centre, Lower Abbey Street, Dublin 1, Ireland


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Subsidiaries: Capital Home Loans
Affiliates: Allianz Ireland (?%)


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The Irish Life and Permanent plc (ILP) group is an Irish provider of personal financial services.

The company is historically derived from three different companies:

  • Irish Life Assurance
  • Irish Permanent Building Society
  • Trustee Savings Bank

ILP trades under the names:

  • Irish Life for life assurance, investments and pensions
  • Permanent TSB for banking, mortgages, loans, credit and debit cards

The Group has over one million customers in Ireland.



ILP owns Capital Home Loans in the UK.



ILP holds a minority interest in Allianz Ireland, the third largest general (non-life) insurer in the Irish market.




Irish Life Assurance

Irish Life was a life assurance company created in 1939 with state assistance and concentrated on life assurance and investment products. By 1936, as a result of the Great Depression, many life assurance companies were technically insolvent.

  • The City of Dublin Assurance Company, Limited;
  • the Irish Life and General Assurance Company, Limited;
  • the Irish National Assurance Company, Limited; and
  • the Munster and Leinster Assurance Company, Limited

were amalgated. (The Munster and Leinster Assurance Company had a banking arm which was later merged into Allied Irish Banks). Later some British companies shed their Irish operations, and merged them into this new company. They were:

  • the Prudential,
  • the Brittanic,
  • the Pearl, and
  • the Refuge.

The intention was to form a new company and then release its shares back on the market. However, other events in 1939, made shares in a life assurance company less attractive. The shares were sold in July 1991.

The 1939 company followed the procedures of the Prudential, its largest component.

In 1965 Irish Life entered the U.K. market and competed against its former parent. Initially under its own name. Later it acquired The City of Westminister Assurance. Irish Life and The City of Westminister Assurance closed for new business, in the UK in 1996. This 'closed book' was sold to Chesnara for for £47.5 million on May 5, 2005.

The Prudential re-entered the Irish market, under its own name. Then sold their second Irish operation to the Insurance Corporation of Ireland. Allied Irish Banks took over Insurace Corporation of Ireland. Shortly afterwads it became insolvent. The Government of Ireland wrote off the debts of Insurance Corporation of Ireland. The Irish Permanent Building Society acquired the life assurance arm (which was effectively the Prudential's second venture into Ireland from the government-appointed administrator. They renamed it Progressive Life. When Irish Life Assurance and the Irish Permanent Building Society merged, the operations of Progressive Life were joined with those of Irish Life Assurance.

Even though the government had to assist Allied Irish Banks following the debacle of Insurance Corporation of Ireland, they established another life assurance company, called 'Ark Life'.

Contary to popular opinion, Irish Life Assurance was never a Semi-State company. It's rival New Ireland Assurance was created by the government. New Ireland Assurance, along with Lifetime are now owned by the Bank of Ireland. In 1939 the minister owned 18% of the shares in the company. In 1947, restructuring and purchase by Minister of Finance of shares held by British life assurance companies resulting in a government holding of 90.25%. In July 1991 these shares were released on the market. [edit]


Irish Permanent Building Society

The Irish Permanent Building Society was founded as The Irish Temperance Permanent Benefit Building Society which was founded in 1884. Building societies existed to help their members build their own home. Initially they were terminating societies. Their membership was closed and they wound up when all members had a house. Permanent Building societies had a rolling membership. Hence the name: Irish Permanent Building Society. In 1940 Its name was changed to Irish Permanent Building Society. In 1992:

  • Irish Permanent Finance, specialising in auto finance, was established.
  • Branch operations were opened in London and Belfast.
  • A Banking subsidiary established in the Isle of Man.

In 1994 The Irish private banking operation of Guinness & Mahon was acquired. In 1996 Capital Home Loans a UK mortgage lender was acquired.

It was a mutual organisations, jointly owned by those saving and borrowing. It demutualised to form a plc on 21 September 1994. Irish Permanent was a predominately personal banking and mortgage company which currently does business in the name of Permanent TSB because of the 2001 Trustee Savings Bank acquisition from the Government of Ireland.


Trustee Savings Bank

The origins of the TSB Bank date back to 1816 when the first Irish Savings Bank was established in Waterford. Shortly afterwards, Savings Banks were established in Cork, Dublin, Monaghan and Limerick. The Dublin and Monaghan banks merged in 1977, followed by the amalgamation of the Cork and Limerick banks in 1986.

In 1988, Waterford was incorporated into the Dublin bank and finally, in 1992, Cork and Limerick Savings Bank amalgamated with Trustee Savings Bank Dublin, to form TSB Bank.

For much of its existence, the Savings Banks operated under the Savings Bank Act 1863, which effectively restricted them to offering savings products. Legislation in 1965 ultimately allowed them to successfully broaden their product range into such areas as personal lending, mortgages, current accounts, credit cards and foreign exchange. The Bank, which was an unincorporated statutory entity, was governed by the Trustee Savings Bank Act 1989.

It was purchased by Irish Life and Permanent from the Government of Ireland in 2001. The banking arm of Irish Life and Permanent now trade under the name Permanent TSB

Permanent TSB is a member of the Laser payment system.



Additionally their are other companies which are part of the group in similar financial areas, such as:

  • ILIM - who manage investments
  • IPSI - who provide third-party administration of life assurance operations, mainly for Italian companies.


  • Irish Life & Permanent reports 9% rise in 2005 operating profit to ... - FinFacts Ireland
  • Friday Newspaper Review - Irish Business News and International ... - FinFacts Ireland
  • Record year for buoyant IL&P -
  • KBW Raises Irish Life Share Price Target -
  • Irish Life 2nd-Half Net Gains 4.1% on Loans, Pensions (Update1) - Bloomberg
  • Thursday March 9th 2006 -
  • Irish Life revels in "perfect environment" - ShareCast
  • Drax, Irish Life, ITV, Savills: UK, Irish Equity Preview - Bloomberg
  • Financials weigh down market - Irish Examiner
  • Tuesday March 7th 2006 -
  • ... more news

Related articles

Image:Wikipedia-small.png Wikipedia article about Irish Life & Permanent (search). This article uses material from that article.