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All set for battle of health firms.

A PRICE war could force down the cost of health insurance with news that BUPA and VHI are set to do battle with a new competitor.

Centura, which is backed by financier Dermot Desmond and AIB, will enter the market on Wednesday, raising the prospect of a price war that could benefit consumers.

It's likely to trade under the name Vivas and will offer a range of health insurance products tailored for different age groups.

Competitor VHI is also said to be launching a new set of products on the same day.

Sources say that they approached corporate customers in recent weeks to offer them more favourable terms ahead of the arrival of Centura.

Since 1996 the state-owned VHI and British-owned BUPA have had the Republic's health insurance market to themselves.
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Publication:The People (London, England)
Date:Oct 17, 2004
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