Decision Nº M/03/015 from Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, 2003-07-08

CourtCompetition and Consumer Protection Commission (Ireland)
PartiesChurchill Insurance Group,Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc
Date08 July 2003
StatusCleared (Phase 1)
Decision Date08 July 2003
Decision NumberM/03/015
Determination of the Competition Authority
Determination No. M/03/015 of the Competition Authority, dated 8th July 2003,
Notification No. M/03/015 – Acquisition by The Royal Bank of Scotland Group
plc of Churchill Insurance Group plc
1. On 13th June 2003 the Competition Authority, in accordance with Section 18 (1)
of the Competition Act, 2002 (“the Act”) was notified, on a mandatory basis, of a
proposal whereby The Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc (“RBS”) would
purchase the entire issued share capital of Churchill Insurance Group plc
The Parties
2. Direct Line is a wholly-owned subsidiary of RBS, which also owns Ulster Bank.
Direct Line, which it is proposed will be brought together with Churchill to form
the insurance division of RBS, sells a small number of insurance products in
Northern Ireland which include motor, home, travel, pet and creditor insurance.
Its activities in the State are limited to home and travel insurance.
3. Churchill is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Winterthur (UK) Holdings Limited, a
UK subsidiary of Winterthur Swiss Insurance company, the life and general
insurance company which is headquartered in Switzerland and owned by Credit
Suisse, a financial services group. Churchill’s activities in the State are not
significant, consisting of special risks insurance business and the sale of travel
insurance products of third parties.
4. Regardless of whether or not insurance services constitute a broad product market
or comprise a variety of more narrowly defined markets, the proposed transaction
will not have a substantial impact on competition. There are a number of
insurance providers on the Irish market and the parties’ combined market share on
a wide or narrow market definition is less than [0 –5]%.
5. The Competition Authority, in accordance with Section 21(2) of the Competition
Act, 2002, has determined that, in its opinion, the result of the proposed
acquisition will not be to substantially lessen competition in markets for goods
and services in the State and, accordingly, that the acquisition may be put into

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