Fleet News

Century International sold to venture capital company

CENTURY International, one of the largest UK independent non-franchised car hire businesses, has been sold less than three months after going into administration, sparking a overhaul in top management. The company went into administration in December 1999 and was part of a growing list of daily rental firms which have collapsed in the past year under the financial strain of collapsing residual values and cut-throat rental rates.

Administrator KPMG sold the Hemel Hempstead-based business to a venture capitalist, the name of which has not been disclosed, and a new company called Century Car Rental has been created to take over the defunct firm's business. Century International operated from 10 sites at major UK airports, along with operations in France (13 sites) and two branches in Dublin and employed 60 staff. The staff and the sites will all be transferred to the new company.

Andy Leedan, former Century International fleet director, is now co-director of the new company, alongside former vehicle purchasing director Jim Thorpe. The firm refused to comment on how the changes affected Bob Burrowes, the former managing director and chairman of the company.

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