Fintech Blend to strengthen digital home buying services through acquisition

Digital lending software provider Blend has agreed to acquire Title365, a title insurance and settlement company …

Digital lending software provider Blend has agreed to acquire Title365, a provider of title insurance and settlement services, from mortgage manager Mr Cooper Group for approximately $ 422 million.

The purchase price reflects a total enterprise value of approximately US $ 500 million, less adjustments of approximately US $ 31 million.

Following the acquisition, Mr Cooper Group, listed on NASDAQ, will retain a 9.9% stake in Title365.

The result of the acquisition will be an integrated home buying service for customers, combining Blend’s technology platform and Title365’s operational expertise.

Latham & Watkins acted as legal counsel to Blend on the transaction, with Greenberg Traurig and Washington, DC, financial services firm Weiner Brodsky Kider as regulatory counsel.

“Title and settlement are manual, time-consuming processes for consumers and lenders, and by bringing all parties together on the same automated platform, we can dramatically improve the experience. With a focus on its customers and operational efficiency, Title365 is the perfect partner to help us scale up our efforts and make an immediate impact in this space, ”said Blend co-founder and CEO Nima Ghamsari, in a press release.

Blend first launched its home insurance offering in 2018, followed by the rollout of its digital closing service, Blend Close, last year.

Blend’s products are used by lenders including US Bank, BMO Harris Bank, First Horizon Bank, and Nationwide Mortgage Bankers.

Following the acquisition, Title 365 President Kristen Estrella will continue to lead the business in the US and India, while the entire workgroup will be fully integrated into Blend’s.

The transaction, which is subject to obtaining regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions, is expected to close in the second quarter of this year.

The Latham & Watkins business team advising Blend was led by Bay Area Partners Tad Freese and Mark Bekheit, alongside four Associates, Kaitlyn Fulcher, Tessa Bernhardt, Casey Tong and Melinda Vanderburg.

California liquid software company JFrog debuted at NASDAQ with the help of Latham & Watkins in September of last year.

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