Insurance company Aviva plans to shut down its entire network of 26 branches around Ireland by June of next year.

Last month Aviva announced that around 950 staff would be made redundant, with a further 300 facing outsourcing of their jobs.

Today's revelation emerged as Aviva appointed Sean Egan as it its new chief executive for its Irish operations.

Aviva's strategy for Ireland, known as "Accelerate", involves moving the company's business to a combination of online delivery and sales through brokers, with Aviva in Ireland operating as a branch of the UK.

Since the announcement of job cuts last month, the company has been in consultation with unions, but the Accelerate document reveals the company's strategy for reducing its cost base in Ireland.

Human resources, IT and finance would all have their central functions serviced from the "UK hub".

All existing Irish business would gradually be transferred to branches in the UK over a year as they came up for renewal.

UK products will be adapted for sale in the Irish market, with limited deviation from UK standards.

The 26-branch network will be shut down by the end of June 2012 with the loss of 120 jobs.

Aviva said 70% of that business will move to brokers, with 30% going to direct channels.

Another 126 jobs will be cut in direct sales and service as they move to web self-service. The claims department will lose 107 jobs.

The team of business development managers will fall from 55 to 26.

Commercial underwriting will lose 39 jobs and finance will lose 20.

The Irish executive management team will be cut from seven to one.

By June 2013, the independent Irish entity will be shut down, although over 1,000 jobs will remain in Ireland.

A call centre will be established in Galway to deal with claims, direct sales and support.

Aviva forecasts 91% of sales and 61% of service could be done online.

It envisages introducing premium rate lines or administration fees to "disincentivise inbound contact".

Under its "Club 110 proposition", Aviva will target the top tier of critical brokers that deliver most revenue for access to preferential services and business placement facilities.

They will take advantage of existing UK relationships with international brokers, such as Aon and Willis.

Meanwhile, the UNITE trade union that represents the majority of staff at Aviva said incoming chief executive Mr Egan had been parachuted in to force through a merger of the Irish business into that of the UK.

Regional Officer Brian Gallagher said it was unacceptable that Aviva had said it would be 2012 before they could release details of how the restructuring and job losses would affect individual staff.