An on-line, pan-European general insurance brokerage will be launched early next year by new virtual finance company, Xelector.

Xelector, which is owned by Dublin-based holding company enba, will initially sell motor insurance, followed closely by travel and household.

Xelector's non-life insurance Tsar (director) Roger Smith said: "We would expect to be a significant player in the intermediated internet motor insurance business by the end of next year."

The move is the first high-profile head-to-head challenge to Misys' Screentrade, an on-line quotation facility that has been visited by 500,000 people in the last ten months alone.

Xelector said it is involved in "detailed negotiations" with a number of leading insurers and expects to have a panel of between six and ten backers by the time its motor package goes live next year.

It is also involved in discussions with bodies like the FSA, the GISC and their European counterparts to discuss the legal aspects of the move.

Xelector indicated that the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Scandinavia and the Netherlands would be the first countries to have access to the service.

Smith added that much of the technology for the service will be provided by "a leading software house", but refused to be drawn on which one.

To promote the company, Xelector is linking up with up to 20 web site portals and hubs – sites like Auto Trader's which deal with all the spin-off areas of a specific product.

Xelector will also provide other financial services including life insurance and pensions.