Irish Times reported (Saturday 7 May) unspecified level of new investment piped into CarTrawler by UK private equity house ECI Partners.
Chief technology officer Bobby Healy and chief operations officer Mike McGearty are understood to have been behind the recent strategy to try and reinvigorate the business through some kind of liquidity event.
Both were locked in talks last Friday afternoon and unable to confirm rumours which surfaced last week that plans first triggered in February this year had finally reached a conclusion.
CarTrawler confirmed the deal on Sunday afternoon.
CEO Greg Turley will be moving aside to a non-executive directorship, paving the way for McGearty to take over leadership of the business.
Turley's brother Niall will remain director of supply.
Chris Watt (ECI Partners) says:
"Greg and Niall Turley have created an exceptional business in CarTrawler. We are delighted that Greg has agreed to continue as a non-executive director of the company and we have a great management team who we are confident will take the business on to a new level.
"ECI is a growth investor with a track record of supporting high growth online companies expanding internationally and we look forward to helping CarTrawler continue to grow across the globe.”
ORIGINAL (February 23 2011):
Ireland-based car hire distribution system CarTrawler has confirmed it is looking to offload a share of the company to help fund its next period of growth.
An official says the company is in talks with "a small number of potential partners" over offloading a part of the business.
The sale would give CarTrawler "access to additional capital to accelerate growth via potential acquisitions, geographic expansions and key hires", the official says.
"CarTrawler has had fantastic success to date and has revolutionised the car rental sector globally. This is a positive development for the Irish company and all of its current employees, suppliers and partners."
Rumours have circulated about the fate of the company ever since Priceline bought the UK-based TravelJigsaw car rental service in May 2010.
Although the two businesses are different in focus (Jigsaw being consumer-facing, CarTrawler providing the distribution network for suppliers), speculation centred on whether a global OTA similar to Priceline would come in for the Dublin company or whether one of the global distribution systems would be interested in adding to its portfolio.
CarTrawler says the talks are with "finance-related" organisations rather than "strategic" discussions with other travel companies.