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CarTrawler announces appointment of three Non-Executive Directors

24th September 2020, Dublin, Ireland: CarTrawler, the leading provider of car rental and mobility solutions to the global travel industry, is pleased to announce the appointment of Willie Walsh as Deputy Chair together with David Barger and Conor Kehoe as non-executive directors, with effect from 30th September 2020. They have decades of experience in the aviation and technology sectors and will bring substantial expertise to the Board.

CarTrawler Chair Patrick Kennedy commented: “We are delighted to welcome Willie, David and Conor to the Board. They bring a wealth of extensive global experience in the aviation and technology industries that will add significant value as the world recovers. Willie has had an outstanding forty-year career in the travel industry, building IAG into one of the leading global carriers. David is an aviation pioneer, having co-founded leading airline jetBlue and growing it into the seventh largest airline in the US. Conor has had an impressive career at McKinsey, having founded its Private Equity/Investor Industry Practice and formerly leading its Tech and Telecom Practice in Europe.”

“I would also like to give our sincere thanks to Bobby Healy, as he steps down from the board, on his outstanding contribution and dedication over the past sixteen years. Bobby has been an exceptional part of the growth of CarTrawler and we wish him the very best in the future.” 

Gordon Holmes, Managing Director and Chief Investment Officer of TowerBrook, said: “Willie, David and Conor joining the Board is a welcome endorsement of CarTrawler’s strength and its future prospects. Their experience and guidance will be a valuable resource as the business continues to pursue its long-term growth ambitions.”

CarTrawler CEO Cormac Barry commented: “Car rental is more relevant than ever in a Covid-19 world. We are seeing demand for car rental recovering quicker than other modes of transport as consumers see car as the safest way to travel. Despite the Covid-19 crisis, the business has had a number of material new partner wins in the last 12 months, most notably easyJet, SAP Concur and Hopper.”

In May CarTrawler announced a controlling equity investment in excess of €100m from TowerBrook Capital Partners L.P., an international investment management firm. This investment is helping drive CarTrawler’s next stage of growth, as the company begins to benefit from the easing of travel restrictions.

About CarTrawler

CarTrawler is the leading global B2B provider of car rental and mobility solutions to the travel industry. We bring opportunities to life through an online marketplace connecting our partners, customers and suppliers.  

CarTrawler’s end-to-end technology platform expands our airline and travel partners’ offering to their customers, creating substantial ancillary revenue opportunities. We provide unrivalled breadth and depth of content worldwide, including car rental, private airport transfer and ride-hailing services.  

CarTrawler creates innovative, data-led solutions for some of the largest travel brands in the world, including American Express, easyJet, Alaska Airlines, SWISS, Hotels.com and Emirates. As a B2B company, we focus solely on helping our airline and travel partners build their brands, not our own.  

CarTrawler was established in 2004, our headquarters are in Dublin, Ireland, with offices in New York. For more information visit www.cartrawler.com.

Willie Walsh | Deputy Chair, CarTrawler

Willie Walsh started his career at Aer Lingus as a pilot in 1979. He held several management positions in the airline before being appointed chief executive of Futura, a Spanish charter airline owned by Aer Lingus in 1998.  He returned to Dublin with Aer Lingus in 2000 where he took up the role of chief operating officer and was subsequently appointed as chief executive in October 2001.

Willie left Aer Lingus in January 2005 and was appointed chief executive of British Airways in May that year. He became chief executive of International Airlines Group (IAG) when the company was created in January 2011, following the merger of British Airways and Iberia. He retired from IAG in early September.

IAG is the parent company of Aer Lingus, British Airways, Iberia, Level and Vueling. It is one of the world’s largest airline groups with more than 570 aircraft flying to 268 destinations and carrying more than 113 million passengers each year.

Willie was President of the London Chamber of Commerce from 2010 to 2013 and has represented the airline industry as Chairman of the Board of Governors of IATA, Chairman of Airlines for Europe (A4E) and President of the Association of European Airlines (AEA).

He finished a five year term as chairman of the National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA), before standing down in December 2018.

He completed a Master of Science degree in Management and Business Administration at Dublin’s Trinity College in 1992.

David Barger | Non-executive Director, CarTrawler

David Barger, also known as Dave, is an Operating Partner at Connor Capital located in Santa Barbara, CA.  He is also Co-Chair Industry Specialists at Oaktree Transportation & Infrastructure Fund located in Los Angeles, CA, a $1.25B newly closed fund. 

In his airline career, he was part of the founding team of JetBlue Airways Corporation in 1998 as President & Chief Operating Officer and served as its Chief Executive Officer from May 2007 to February 2015 and was a member of JetBlue’s Board of Directors. From 1992 to 1998, he served in various management positions with Continental Airlines, including Vice President of the Newark hub. Dave held various Director level positions at Continental Airlines from 1988 to 1992 and was with New York Air from 1981 – 1988. 

Dave was awarded the 2016 L. Welch Pogue Lifetime Achievement Award by the International Aviation Club and was involved with many aviation organizations over his aviation career.

Dave is passionate about education. He funded the University of Michigan’s Barger Leadership Institute (BLI) which supports the undergraduate students mainly from the College of Literature, Science and the Arts by providing access to interesting leadership settings outside of the traditional classroom.

Dave is a member of the following boards: Kaiser Health Plan & Hospital Foundation, Aernnova Aerospace, Ports America, LoneStar Airport Holdings, Arnie’s Army Charitable Foundation.

Conor Kehoe | Non-executive Director, CarTrawler

Conor is a Senior Adviser and former Senior Partner at McKinsey & Company. He chairs the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) – a coalition of 70 organisations dedicated to improving ‘ESG’ reporting. He founded and co-leads McKinsey’s Board Intelligence Forum – bringing the latest management thinking to the boards of large companies. He founded McKinsey’s Private Equity/Investor Industry Practice and was also involved in board and owner governance and in Corporate Strategy. He was a founding member of the Executive Committee of McKinsey Solutions, a Venture Capital activity that invests in software tools for management decision support, and, originally a software engineer, has led McKinsey’s Tech and Telecom Practice in Europe. He was a member of McKinsey’s Global Risk Committee and is also adjunct lecturer at Tsinghua University in Beijing. Recently, he has refreshed his old software engineering skills – completing Stanford’s Machine Learning Course in May 2018.

He joined McKinsey from the then FTSE100 Granada Group where he was a member of the Board Executive Committee and a Divisional Chairman.

He has a first-class honours degree in electronic engineering from Trinity College Dublin, where he was a Foundation Scholar, and an MBA (with distinction) from INSEAD.