Cork-based online fraud fighter Trustev has been bought by New York-listed credit reporter TransUnion for up to $44m.
The company, set up by former butcher and entrepreneur Pat Phelan, makes software that monitors e-commerce transactions to try and stop fraud.
“As fraud grows in volume and sophistication, TransUnion continues to invest in building our global capabilities to help companies manage their risk,” said Jim Peck, TransUnion’s president and chief executive officer.
TransUnion is paying $21m up front, with a further $23m contingent on certain targets.
Mr Phelan, who founded and eventually sold out of internet-of-things company Cubic Telecom, said the deal would create “a very powerful combination of software intelligence and rich data to stop online fraud”.
Phelan left school early, and trained as a butcher and a chef in his home city of Cork. By his mid-30s, an alcohol dependence rendered Phelan virtually “unemployable” and threatened his marriage, he told Independent.ie in an earlier interview.
Phelan sobered up and developed an enviable reputation as a no-nonsense serial entrepreneur. After selling Cubic Telecom, a mobile roaming service, he sank the proceeds into Trustev, a fraud protection service he created in late 2012 with partner Chris Kennedy.