Northern Ireland

75 jobs saved at Quinn Insurance in Enniskillen

Quinn Insurance employs 600 people in County Fermanagh
Image caption Quinn Insurance employs 600 people in County Fermanagh

Seventy-five planned redundancies at Quinn Insurance in Enniskillen will not now be implemented.

The firm's administrator has confirmed that the redundancies from its consumer sales business will not now go ahead.

This decision does not affect the voluntary-led redundancies planned in other functional areas of Quinn Insurance.

Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster welcomed the announcement.

"Since the ban on trading in the UK private motor insurance business was lifted in April, staff at Quinn Enniskillen have worked hard to maintain and grow levels of business.

"As a result, the administrator has taken the decision not to seek any redundancies in the private lines business in Enniskillen, a decision which I am sure will be met with relief by the 75 employees affected.

"My department and Invest NI remain committed to safeguarding the employment and investment by Quinn Insurance in Northern Ireland in the longer term," she added.

"We will continue to build our relationship with the administrator and any potential new owners to reinforce the strong capabilities of the Enniskillen site."

In a statement the company said the jobs had been retained as a "result of strong customer retention, the acquisition of new business above previous projections, and an increase in natural attrition in the private lines division".

'Professionalism'

The statement continued: "The improvement in Quinn Insurance's business performance since the announcement of its redundancy programme on 30 April has led to a position where the business cannot proceed with further redundancies in private lines, Enniskillen.

"This decision does not impact the restructuring programme underway at other sites."

Michael McAteer, Joint Administrator Michael McAteer spoke to staff on Wednesday and paid tribute to their ongoing professionalism.

He said this was reflected in the fact that customers are continuing to place and retain their business with the company.

Sinn Fein MP for the area Michelle Gildernew said that Quinn employees had faced a "massive challenge" in trying to grow the business in "very challenging conditions".

She added: "As the recent announcement that Quinn Insurance has returned to profitability shows, they have done a fantastic job.

"I am very pleased with this show of confidence by the administrators, especially in the private lines department as it indicates greater than anticipated improvements in the Enniskillen office and I hope that it indicates more good news to come in the future."

More than 900 workers applied for voluntary redundancy after the company was put into administration by the High Court in Dublin in March.

Dublin's High Court heard the company had significantly breached its solvency ratios.

At the end of April the company's administrators announced the need to cut the posts.

The company is shedding 900 staff at locations on both sides of the border including Navan, Cavan and Dublin.

The job cuts will be carried out over a 15-month period up until the middle of 2011.

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