Ann Arbor, Michigan, March 22, 2019,– University Bancorp, Inc. (OTCQB: UNIB) (the “Company”) announced that University Lending Group (“ULG”), a subsidiary of University Bank (the “Bank”) has acquired assets including leased branch offices and hired a group of 52 employees from Huron Valley Financial, Inc. (“HVF”), a privately held mortgage banking firm also headquartered in Ann Arbor, MI. The now allied group of employees on a combined basis was Washtenaw County’s #1 locally based first mortgage loan originator in both 2018 and 2017. In the transaction ULG also acquired assets and hired the employees of HVF’s reverse mortgage division, 1st Nations Reverse, and its wholesale lending division, HVF Partners. HVF was the #19 reverse mortgage lender nationwide in 2018 based on volume of loans originated.
The new associates add 26 retail residential loan officers, add 270 wholesale clients to its wholesale lending division, and ULG will instantly rank as one of the top reverse mortgage lenders in the country. The combined firm originated over $1 billion in residential first mortgages in 2017 and 2018. The combined firm will have over 440 employees, with the addition of 52 from the HVF team.
In Washtenaw County alone, the combined firm originated:
- In 2017: 519 first mortgage loans for $116,981,869, 5.81% market share in units and 5.53% market share in dollars.
- In 2018: 320 first mortgage loans for $77,474,554 4.46% market share in units and 4.16% market share in dollars.
In addition to its Ann Arbor headquarters, HVF also has Loan Production Branch Offices in Brighton, Clarkston and Southgate, which will be part of the combined firm. ULG also has offices in Ann Arbor and Clinton Township.
The combined firm has the broadest portfolio of products of any lender in Washtenaw County, including conventional (FNMA, FHLMC, FHLB), government (FHA, VA, USDA-RD), reverse (FHA), single close construction to permanent financing, renovation (FNMA, FHLMC, FHA, VA), portfolio, jumbo, home equity, doctor and professional first time homebuyer and other niche products. The combined sales force can also refer customers as needed, to University Bank’s full community banking and insurance agency products (offered through Ann Arbor Insurance Centre*).
Stephen Lange Ranzini, President and CEO of University Bank stated, “I’ve known Eric Bradley prior to the foundation of HVF in 1997 and have admired his ability to build and bring together one of the top mortgage origination teams in Washtenaw County. We see this alliance and association as bringing together two very skilled teams with similar cultures. Both of our firms are focused on providing top rated customer service to consumers and specialize in working with sources of influence including Financial Advisors, CPAs, Lawyers and other professionals to provide professional mortgage services to their clients. We will bring our unique customer service that provides underwriting decisions and underwriting condition waivers in 24 hours or less and the wider product menu of financial services that University Bank makes available to this larger group of loan officers and their customers.”
Eric Bradley, President and CEO of Huron Valley Financial stated, “I am very pleased to unite the HVF team with University Bank and University Lending Group. I have known Stephen Lange Ranzini for over 22 years and I have always been impressed by his business acumen and his track record of success in growing the bank from $34 million in assets, $14 million in loans and 21 employees to $22 billion in assets under management and 390 employees. Integrating the unique mortgage loan products and services offered by both companies with our highly educated, professional, and ethical loan officers gives consumers in southeast Michigan a distinct choice for mortgage lenders. Our combined companies will offer a variety of unique products along with technology that allows consumers to manage the entire loan process online, yet we’ll still maintain local offices where consumers can meet in person with a mortgage professional and discuss financing options over a cup of coffee.
While the combined firm will be the largest locally based first mortgage loan originator, Quicken Loans had a higher market share in 2017 and 2018, however, it has no offices or loan officers based in Washtenaw County and uses a call center based in Detroit, and a mortgage app to interact with consumers. President Ranzini noted, “Quicken Loans prices its products at a premium to pay for its expensive national ad campaigns and college sports endorsements. Consumers pay unnecessarily for these extra costs when they obtain mortgages. Moreover consumers that apply through its app receive a quick approval only in very limited cases. We hear just 10% of applicants are approved quickly and the rest are referred to a traditional mortgage application channel. We believe that consumers are better off dealing with local market experts who can provide personal service, attention and superior advice, and have access to a wider menu of financial services products that only a top rated community bank can provide.”
Addition details about the terms of the transaction are available on the Company’s investor relations web page at: http://www.university-bank.com/bancorp/.
Shareholders and investors are encouraged to refer to the financial information including the audited financial statements, strategic plan and prior press releases, available on our investor relations web page at: http://www.university-bank.com/bancorp/.
Ann Arbor-based University Bancorp owns 100% of University Bank which, together with its Michigan-based subsidiaries, holds and manages a total of over $22 billion in financial assets for over 127,000 customers, and our 440 employees make us the 5th largest bank based in Michigan. University Bank is an FDIC-insured, locally owned and managed community bank, and meets the financial needs of its community through its creative and innovative services. Founded in 1890, University Bank® is the 15th oldest bank headquartered in Michigan. We are proud to have been selected as the “Community Bankers of the Year” by American Banker magazine and as the recipient of the American Bankers Association’s Community Bank Award. University Bank is a Member FDIC and an Equal Housing Lender. *(Insurance services are offered through Ann Arbor Insurance Centre, Inc. (AAIC), which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of University Bank. No FDIC Insurance/Risk of Loss: AAIC’s products are not insured by the FDIC or the Bank. AAIC’s products are not a deposit or other obligation of, or guaranteed by, the Bank).
The members of University Bank’s corporate family, ranked by their size of revenues are:
- University Lending Group, a retail residential mortgage originator based in Clinton Township, MI;
- Midwest Loan Services, a residential mortgage subservicer based in Houghton, MI;
- UIF, a faith-based banking firm based in Southfield, MI;
- Community Banking, based in Ann Arbor, MI, which provides traditional community banking services in the Ann Arbor & Washtenaw County area;
- Midwest Loan Solutions, a residential mortgage correspondent lender based in Southfield, MI, also doing business as American Mortgage Solutions;
- Ann Arbor Insurance Centre, an independent insurance agency based in Ann Arbor.
Contact: Stephen Lange Ranzini, President and CEO
Phone: 734-741-5858, Ext. 9226
CAUTIONARY STATEMENT: This press release contains certain forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements concerning future changes in assets, pre-tax income, net income and budgeted income levels, the sustainability of past results, and other expectations and/or goals. Such statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, economic, competitive, governmental, technological and legal factors affecting our operations, markets, products, services, interest rates and fees for services. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release.