Percana secures BPO contract with Top 10 UK life assurer

25 Jan 2010

Up-and-coming Irish software, outsourcing and consultancy player Percana Group has secured a major business process outsourcing (BPO) contract with one of the UK’s Top 10 life assurers, Pearl Group.

Pearl Group has two major Life and Pensions (L&P) businesses (policy books) in Ireland, Scottish Mutual International Limited and the Phoenix Ireland (previously Scottish Provident Ireland).

The new agreement will result in an 11-year contract for Percana covering the full administration of Pearl’s Irish L&P business. As part of the agreement, Pearl’s 110 Irish-based employees have transferred to Percana effective 1 January, 2010, doubling Percana’s employee numbers.

Employee numbers

Established in 1999, Percana Group now employs more than 220 people from its headquarters in Parkwest Business Park in Dublin.

In September 2008, International Financial Data Services (Ireland) Limited (IFDS Ireland) acquired a substantial minority interest in Percana Group Limited (Percana). IFDS Ireland is one of a series of joint ventures established between State Street Corporation and DST Systems Inc., which collectively form the leading global specialists in the provision of transfer agency services to mutual funds complexes.

This new mandate will encompass front and back office policy servicing, including policy holder and agent call-centre support. Both policy books will migrate onto Percana’s flagship policy administration platform ‘Eclipse.’

“Following a detailed selection process, Percana were chosen because of their wide range of capabilities to deliver a comprehensive, cost-effective IT-driven solution through their Eclipse system,” Ciaran McGettrick, managing director for Pearl’s operations in Ireland explained.

“We were also impressed by the expertise and commitment of the Percana team linked to the strength of their shareholders. We are impressed by Percana’s track record of delivery and look forward to working with them on this contract.”

Pearl Group owned

Pearl’s Irish L&P business is part of a broader group of companies owned by Pearl Group, which is a Top 10 UK life assurer.

“Our technology platform, people, experience, track record and outsourcing model is validated by virtue of the fact that companies such as Pearl Group continue to select Percana’s solutions for their critical business operational activities,” Eugene Larmon, CEO of Percana said.

The year 2009 reports indicated that Pearl Group had 7.65 million policies in force and assets under management of around £66 billion underlining its position as a significant player in the Life and Pension sector.

Paul O’Kane, executive chairman of Percana, said: “We intend to build on the strategic alliance established with IFDS to become a leading life and pensions software and BPO provider across a range of international markets.

“We believe we have major opportunities to grow our business and rapidly enhance our existing client base of 14 life assurance companies across multiple jurisdictions,” O’Kane added.

By John Kennedy

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years