First American Corporation

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First American Financial Corporation
Type Public
Traded as NYSEFAF
Industry Financial services
Founded 1894
Headquarters 1 First American Way
Santa Ana, California, USA
Area served United States
Key people Parker S. Kennedy (Chairman)
Dennis J. Gilmore (CEO)
Products Title insurance
Revenue Increase US$ 4.956 billion (2013)[1]
Operating income Increase US$ 467.41 million (2012)[1]
Net income Increase US$ 301.04 million (2012)[1]
Total assets Increase US$ 6.050 billion (2012)[1]
Total equity Increase US$ 2.348 billion (2012)[1]
Employees 17,312 (2012)[1]
Website www.firstam.com

First American Financial Corporation is a United States financial services company and is a leading provider of title insurance and settlement services to the real estate and mortgage industries.

First American provides financial services through its Title Insurance and Services segment and its Specialty Insurance segment. The First American Family of Companies’ core business lines include title insurance and closing/settlement services; title plant management services; title and other real property records and images; valuation products and services; home warranty products; property and casualty insurance; and banking, trust and investment advisory services.

First American serves homebuyers and sellers, real estate professionals, loan originators and servicers, commercial property professionals, homebuilders and others involved in residential and commercial property transactions with products and services specific to their needs.

First American offers its products and services directly and through its agents and partners throughout the United States and in more than 60 countries.

In June 2010, First American Financial Corporation was established when The First American Corporation split its businesses to create two separate legal entities, First American Financial Corporation (NYSEFAF) which provides title and financial services and CoreLogic Inc. (NYSECLGX) which provides information solutions [2] and analytics services to the real estate and mortgage industry.

History[edit]

Orange County Title Company (1894–1960)[edit]

First American traces its roots to 1889, when Orange County, California—a rural, undeveloped area at the time—split off from the county of Los Angeles. Two firms opened to handle title matters in the brand-new county. Five years later, Charles Edward Parker (C.E. Parker), a local businessman, succeeded in merging the two competitors into a single entity—Orange County Title Company. C.E. Parker became the president of Orange County Title, which, starting in 1909, would pay a cash dividend every year for the rest of the century and would become one of the first abstract companies in California to qualify to issue title insurance policies.[3]

Donald Parker Kennedy (D.P. Kennedy), grandson of C.E. Parker, joined Orange County Title in 1948. D.P. Kennedy developed a plan to expand the company beyond Orange County, which was approved by the board of directors in 1957. The first branch office was established shortly thereafter in Ventura, California and Orange County Title was soon operating in

First American Title Insurance and Trust Company(1960–1968)[edit]

Entrance to First American Corporation headquarters complex in Santa Ana

Orange County Title was renamed First American Title Insurance in 1960 to reflect operations beyond Orange County,

D.P. Kennedy was named president of First American Title in 1963, replacing his uncle, George Parker. First American Title had its initial public offering on the over-the-counter market in 1964 and, four years later, was restructured with the formation of The First American Financial Corporation as a holding company. First American Title became a subsidiary company and a trust business was conducted through First American Trust Company.

The First American Financial Corporation(1968–2000)[edit]

First American expanded its title operations across the nation by opening new offices and acquiring existing title and abstract companies. This growth lead to an expansion of the company's Santa Ana headquarters in 1976. By 1982, First American served all regions of the United States. First American began to operate internationally with the opening of title insurance offices in Canada in 1988. First American continued to develop international operations and was the first title insurance provider in Mexico, Korea and Hong Kong, and had the leading market share in Australia and England.

First American had also been incorporating additional business lines since 1984, including establishment of a home warranty subsidiary, a real estate tax service, a credit reporting company, and a flood certification company. In 1986, First American began to acquire business information companies involved in the real estate transfer business.

First American introduced a tax monitoring service in 1987, which, after being supplemented by a 1991 purchase of TRTS Data Services, made First American the second largest provider of tax monitoring services in the United States. In 1991, the credit reporting and tax monitoring ventures were merged into a new subsidiary, First American Real Estate Information Services, Inc., which operated in technological areas, such as servicing software systems and database products involving property information, appraisal, automated title plans and document imaging. The company's acquisition of Flood Data Services in 1995 made it the largest flood information service in the industry.

First American also focused heavily on its mortgage credit reporting business. First American acquired Metropolitan Credit Reporting Services, Inc., Metropolitan Property Reporting Services, Inc., California Credit Data, Inc. and Prime Credit Reports, Inc. in 1994. First American added CREDCO, Inc. in 1995, making it the largest mortgage credit reporting service in the country, based on the number of reports issued.

Parker S. Kennedy, the son of D.P. Kennedy was named president of First American Title in 1989 and assumed the presidency of the parent corporation in 1993. On December 3, 1993, the company moved its shares to the New York Stock Exchange.

The First American Corporation (2000–2010)[edit]

The First American Financial Corporation was renamed The First American Corporation in May 2000 to reflect the expansion of services beyond financial services and title insurance. As First American grew to become one of the nation's largest title insurance, specialty insurance and trust services providers, its data storehouse, analytics capabilities and business services capacity grew in tandem. By 2008, First American had grown to become the nation's preeminent real estate information business.[citation needed]

The First American Family of Companies grew to operate within five business segments, including: Title Insurance and Services, Specialty Insurance, Mortgage Information, Property Information, and Risk Mitigation and Business Solutions. First American had approximately 2,100 offices throughout the United States and abroad.

First American Financial Corporation (2010–present)[edit]

In June 2010, The First American Corporation split to create two highly focused companies serving the distinct needs of customers across diverse industries. The title insurance and settlement services of The First American Corporation became First American Financial Corporation while the property information and analytics businesses became CoreLogic Inc.

Today, the company continues to be commonly referred to as First American and serves homebuyers and sellers, real estate professionals, loan originators and servicers, commercial property professionals, homebuilders, and others involved in residential and commercial property transactions with products and services specific to their businesses. Those services include title insurance and closing/settlement services; property data, and title plant records and images; home warranties; property and casualty insurance; and banking, trust, and advisory services.

Products and services[edit]

First American serves homebuyers and sellers, real estate professionals, loan originators and servicers, commercial property professionals, homebuilders, and others involved in residential and commercial property transactions with products and services specific to their needs. First American provides title insurance and closing/settlement services; title plant management services; title and other real property records and images; valuation products and services; home warranty products; property and casualty insurance; and banking, trust and investment advisory services.

Spin-off[edit]

June 1, 2010 marked the separation of the First American Corporation's financial services operations and its information solutions businesses into two independent public companies.[4] The spin-off was intended to allow First American to focus solely on its core businesses.

As part of a spin-off transaction, First American Financial Corporation common stock was distributed to shareholders of The First American Corporation on June 1, 2010.[5] The First American Corporation assumed the new name CoreLogic, Inc. on that day. The shares of both companies traded on a “when-issued” basis from May 24, 2010 through June 1, 2010, and began full-fledged trading on the New York Stock Exchange on June 2, 2010; First American Financial Corporation under the ticker symbol FAF, and CoreLogic, Inc. under the ticker symbol CLGX.

On June 1, 2010, each shareholder received one share of First American Financial Corporation common stock for every share of The First American Corporation common stock held as of the close of business on the record date of May 26, 2010. Shareholders also received a cash payment in lieu of any fractional shares.

Selected subsidiaries and divisions[edit]

First American Title Insurance Company[edit]

First American Title Insurance Company provides title insurance protection and professional settlement services for homebuyers and sellers, real estate agels, homebuilders and developers, title agencies and legal professionals to facilitate real estate purchases, construction, refinances or equity loans.

First American Data Tree[edit]

First American Data Tree is the US nation’s leading providers of public and digital land records and property information, offering a nation wide database of over 4 billion property recorded land documents of 900 plus counties. .[6]

Data Trace[edit]

Data Trace is a title technology company that provides a standardized title and tax information system that spans the nation and empowers title insurance companies to streamline order processing and title production.

FAF International[edit]

FAF International is the international division of First American Financial Corporation and is the leading provider of title insurance and a broad range of related property and financial services to both corporate clients and consumers around the world.

First American Trust, FSB[edit]

A wholly owned subsidiary of First American Financial Corporation for more than four decades, First American Trust, FSB provides trust and estate administration, trust real estate asset management, investment management, and a range of deposit products and banking solutions to the escrow and real estate industries. First American Trust is chartered as a Federal Savings Bank with the Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS).

First American Thrift[edit]

First American Thrift is a Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation-insured industrial bank which specializes in loans secured by commercial property in Southern California. The thrift, which has a single branch located in Orange, California, offers a liquid account which pays the current T-bill rate.

First American Property and Casualty Insurance Company[edit]

The First American Property & Casualty Insurance Companies offer property and casualty insurance products to home buyers through independent agents and directly through the escrow or closing process.

First American Homebuyers Protection Corporation[edit]

First American Home Buyers Protection is a leading provider of home warranties offering homebuyers and homesellers protection against repairs and replacement on their homes’ essential systems and appliances through service provided by a large network of pre-screened and qualified contractors and technicians.

First American (India)[edit]

In 2001, First American established First Indian Corporation Private Limited (FIC), to serve as its offshore provider of technology, transaction and analytics services to the Real Estate and Mortgage Industry. First Indian had more than 4,000 professionals working out of offices in Bangalore, Hyderabad, Salem and Mangalore.

With the spin off of The First American Corporation into First American Financial Corporation and Core Logic Inc., First Indian Corporation also split in two groups as First American (India) for financial services and Core Logic for Information solutions in India.

Core Logic India was acquired by the technology giant Cognizant in 2011.

First American (India) currently has its offices in Hyderabad, Salem and Bangalore, with over 4,000 employees on board. The services offered to its American counterpart includes title insurance processing, software development and testing, technical support, financial services, mortgage servicing and default related services, and legal services.

First American (India) won the NASSCOM award for best emerging companies in the year 2013 [7]

References[edit]