Dutch-owned RaboDirect is to enter the pensions market here. The company, which operates in Ireland as an internet savings bank, is launching an online PRSA pension product after a tie up with Zurich Life.

For a minimum monthly €10 contribution, RaboDirect is promising cheaper upfront costs and more policy holder control on how and where their money is invested. The product is also easily managed online.

For customers signing up in 2009, upfront costs will be capped at 2% and this will be reflected in all additional contributions made after that. This compares to an industry standard of 5%. The annual management fee for the fund is 1%.

RaboDirect says there is a clear need to demystify pension products and help people plan properly for their retirement.

'We entered the Irish market over four years ago and, since then, have seen a steady increase in the number of customers looking to take their savings and investments decisions into their own hands,' commented Killian Nolan, Investment Manager at Rabodirect.