TrustedHousesitters
[Credit: TrustedHousesitters]

PE firm backs $100m MBO of TrustedHousesitters

UK: Mayfair Equity Partners, a private equity firm with more than £2 billion in assets under management, is backing a management buyout [MBO] of TrustedHousesitters, a subscription-based pet-setting and travel community.

As a result, Mayfair will hold a majority stake in the business alongside the management team, while fellow private equity firm Rockpool will exit its stake in TrustedHousesitters and reinvest alongside Mayfair.

The transaction values the business at over $100 million. Additional deal terms have not been disclosed.

TrustedHousesitters is a travel solution for pet people which connects pet owners with pet sitters around the world. Through the platform, pet owners can find verified sitters to look after their pets while they are away from home and, in return, sitters are able to visit destinations across the globe for a unique and rewarding travel experience.

Since its founding in 2010, the company says that it has facilitated over ten million nights of pet sitting and grown its operations to more than 140 countries, saving pet owners and travellers “thousands of pounds” annually in accommodation and pet care costs.

The pet care and travel sectors are expected to grow to $369 billion by 2030 and $1,016 billion by 2027, respectively, according to a press release.

Mayfair is partnering with TrustedHousesitters CEO Mathew Prior and the management team to accelerate growth and support product innovation across its core markets in the United States, the UK, Europe, and Australia.

In 2022 alone, TrustedHousesitters recorded 158 per cent year-on-year growth, supported by a rising pet population, the accelerated digitisation of pet services, and a return to more normalised rates of travel. The company now has more than 200,000 members in 140+ countries in its community.

Prior said: “Pet parents know that pets are more comfortable at home than in kennels, boarding facilities or even with friends and family. At the same time, there are millions of pet lovers throughout the world who seek authentic, sustainable, and cost-effective travel experiences.

“I’m proud of our platform’s growth over the past few years and the wonderfully positive feedback we receive from our members. We see a huge opportunity for continued expansion and believe that Mayfair is the right partner to help us achieve our global growth ambitions.”

Kunal Dasgupta, partner at Mayfair Equity Partners, said: “TrustedHousesitters is a unique petcare and travel solution with off-the-chart customer satisfaction scores. The company is creating a category by disrupting conventional pet-sitting services and offering a cost-effective alternative to traditional holiday accommodation.

“We’re excited to back a genuine innovator at the intersection of travel and pet care and believe that pet sitting services are an untapped opportunity in the pet care sector. TrustedHousesitters is ideally placed to succeed and we’re excited to partner with Mathew and his team on the next stage of their journey,” added Dasgupta.

Advisors to Mayfair on the transaction included Torch Partners, OC&C, PwC, Goodwin Proctor, and Palladium.

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