Austin-based Turnkey raises $3 million to expand into new regions

Jun 10, 2014
Austin American Statesman

In some ways, purchasing a vacation rental home is the easy part. Then comes marketing the property, booking it and dealing with a revolving door of vacationers. Two years ago, two veterans of the online travel industry saw an opportunity to use mobile technology to handle the process


They launched Turnkey Vacation Rentals, which today manages about 200 properties in Austin, Port Aransas and Santa Barbara, Calif.


The company on Tuesday will announce it has raised $3 million to expand into five new regions


Investors include Silverton Partners and a roster of online travel heavy hitters such as Rich Barton, co-founder of Expedia and co-founder of Zillow; Karl Peterson, co-founder of Hotwire and Greg Slyngstad, co-founder of Expedia and founder of VacationSpot


Turnkey has raised a total of $4.8 million since its founding


Investors said they’re betting on the company’s founders: John Banczak, who formerly held leadership roles at HomeAway, BnB.com and Hotwire.com; and T.J. Clark, who was previously CEO of Limos.com and corporate counsel at Hotwire


“The management team is unusually deep and experienced, and we couldn’t ask for a better team to execute on this concept,” said Bill Wood, founder of Silverton Partners. “We really like the market because it’s an opportunity to apply leading edge technology to an industry that has lagged in technology uptake.”


TurnKey’s service includes creating a listing and promoting the home on vacation rental sites, responding to guest inquiries and handling reservations. When a property is booked, Turnkey oversees the visit, including check-ins, cleaning and maintenance


TurnKey competes with traditional property management firms, which typically 30 percent commissions. Turnkey charges 14 percent of bookings, which would mean $28 for a $200 a night rental


The company, which has 21 employees, said it will announce its new markets this summer


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