Laya Healthcare, Ireland's second largest health insurance provider, has been taken over by international insurance organisation AIG.

The agreement was signed today but the completion of the transaction will take place once the necessary regulatory approvals have been obtained.

Laya Healthcare has said it is business as usual when it comes to members' day-to-day dealings with the company.

Laya Healthcare will continue to operate in Cork and will be part of AIG's Global Healthcare business. 

It will be able to offer its members access to AIG's products as the company expands its customer base across Ireland.

AIG plans to use the deal to accelerate growth in its health insurance business in other markets outside Ireland.

70% of Laya had been owned by Aventas Group, the former Quinn Group; and four members of Laya's management, led by chief executive Donal Clancy, owned the remaining 30%. 

Laya has almost half a million members in the Irish market, and an annual premium income of about €500m.