Nation's Second Largest Nonbank Consumer Lender loanDepot LLC To Acquire Mortgage Master, Inc

loanDepot, LLC Sets Stage to Empower Consumers Pursuing Access to Credit with More Lending Products, Services, Locations and Convenience

Nov 13, 2014

loanDepot, LLC., the nation’s second largest nonbank consumer lender, today announced the signing of a definitive agreement to acquire Mortgage Master, Inc., a super-regional mortgage lender and one of the country’s largest privately-owned mortgage companies. Both companies combined retail loan funding volume in October 2014 was $1.75 billion with nearly $70 million in top-line revenue. Upon closing, the loanDepot brands as a combined company will operate 130 retail lending branches across the country, four web production centers, and employ 3,700 full-time associates including more than 1,200 licensed loan officers serving borrowers in all 50 states. The transaction between loanDepot, LLC and Mortgage Master, Inc. is expected to close in early 2015 subject to regulatory approvals.

The combined company will maintain and operate the, imortgage, and Mortgage Master consumer brands, offering borrowers across the country vital access to the financing, information and expertise they need to pursue their lending needs. The LDWholesale brand will continue helping brokers grow their businesses by delivering competitively-priced products with high-touch, high-tech service.

“By welcoming our colleagues at Mortgage Master to loanDepot, we are creating a very powerful and exciting opportunity for the organization, consumers, and our employees,” said Anthony Hsieh, chairman and chief executive officer of loanDepot, LLC. “Our business models, our cultures, and our product offerings are highly complementary. The combined company will position us to accelerate our expansion in the northeast while continuing to build our national consumer lending businesses offering both mortgage and nonmortgage lending products.”

As part of the agreement, Mortgage Master’s Founder and CEO Leif Thomsen and President Paul Anastos will continue to lead the Mortgage Master brand.

“We are extremely excited to join the loanDepot team,” said Leif Thomsen, chief executive officer, owner and founder of Mortgage Master. “Our goal was to position Mortgage Master so we could continue offering the best programs at the best prices, while delivering more innovative products, marketing services and technology resources for our employees to ensure best-in-class services to borrowers. This partnership empowers us to do this while creating substantial growth opportunity for the Mortgage Master brand. We are looking forward to working alongside the great leadership throughout loanDepot and working towards a shared vision on the future of the business. This is the most excited I’ve been about our Company in a very long time!”

Established in 1988, Mortgage Master is one of the largest independent nonbank retail lenders in the northeast region employing 700 lending professionals that includes 300 licensed loan officers operating from 44 branches in 14 states. Mortgage Master assisted more than 19,000 borrowers in 26 states, and funded more than $6.2 billion in retail home loans in 2013.

loanDepot, LLC, has consistently doubled the company’s loan originations annually since its inception in 2010, increasing funding volume by 146 percent in the past two years. The acquisition of Mortgage Master is expected to fuel further growth of loanDepot’s enterprise-level retail branch strategy and coast-to-coast reach while complementing the company’s online direct-lending business of both home and personal loan products.

“There are great growth opportunities for lenders today led by strong management teams who have shared vision, values and goals,” Hsieh said. “In the past two years, loanDepot will have completed the two largest M&A transactions occurring after the 2007 financial crisis by nonbank lenders in the industry. We will continue growing market share through organic expansion and selective strategic acquisitions and have many important milestones ahead, including the introduction of consumer loans. We’re excited to have our colleagues at Mortgage Master join us at the threshold of a new era in lending.”

In November 2013, loanDepot, LLC started operating imortgage, a leading retail lending platform and division of loanDepot, LLC with 85+ branch locations focused in the western United States. The resulting retail-branch lending platform has grown 30 percent since joining loanDepot LLC, and immediately delivered a complementary balance of high-touch retail branch locations with loanDepot’s high-tech web-center business model.

“We chose to join loanDepot because we were impressed by the strength and experience of their management team who shared like-minded goals,” said Paul Anastos, president of Mortgage Master. “Our primary objective for Mortgage Master was finding a partner who had similar beliefs on how best to grow our business with a culture that matched our own. In fact, our planning leading up to the announcement focused as much on cultural integration as the obvious financial benefits and stability of our combined businesses. We are truly excited about the opportunities this presents for our employees and customers.”

loanDepot, LLC in September announced plans to begin offering personal loans in early 2015. The move marked the first milestone in the company’s strategic plan to enter and redefine the consumer lending category as the premier national nonbank retail lender of choice. loanDepot is on track to deliver the company’s first personal loan products in early 2015 with convenient access at and through the company’s 1200 nationwide licensed loan officers.

“We’re committed to integrating the loanDepot family of brands into the financial lifecycles of consumers from all walks of life,” said David Norris, president and chief operating officer at loanDepot LLC. “Demand for credit remains strong with consumers, for both mortgage and consumer lending products. Our partnership with Mortgage Master fortifies our strong foundation that supports our mission to be the lender of choice for consumers pursuing their own dreams, whatever they may be. We’re excited to welcome Mortgage Master to the loanDepot family of brands.”

Launched in 2010, loanDepot LLC, the leading national nonbank retail lender in the country with retail, consumer direct, wholesale, affinity and servicing operations. loanDepot LLC operates under the brand names of, imortgage and LDWholesale, and maintains dual corporate headquarters in Foothill Ranch, CA and Plano, TX. loanDepot LLC is licensed in all 50 states, generates loan production from four web centers, employs 3,000 people that includes 900 licensed mortgage bankers, and operates 85+ imortgage branch locations across the nation. loanDepot is an approved seller and servicer for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae., LLC, NMLS # 174457

Mortgage Master, Inc. is a Massachusetts company founded in 1988 by Leif Thomsen. Since then, the Company has grown to be one of the largest privately owned lenders in the nation. Mortgage Master employs approximately 700 employees nationwide, with over 300 loan experts providing loans and services in 26 states and the District of Columbia. In 2013, Mortgage Master was named to Inc. Magazines' list of America's Fastest Growing companies, and ranked in the top 10 in Mortgage Executive Magazine’s list of Top 100 Mortgage Companies in America 2013. NMLS ID # 4251

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