Insurer CNA has increased its capital by £11.5m to £40m in preparation for launching a direct operation in Europe.

Chief executive Hugh Morland said the re-capitalisation follows strong growth over the past two years: “This is very positive news. It will allow us to expand our business in Europe, reflecting the commitment of our parent company, CNA Financial Corporation, to establish a significant direct insurance operation in Europe.”

CNA will merge with its sister company, Maritime Insurance Company, next summer.