Essent Raises $100 Million in Additional Capital; Company Issues First Mortgage Insurance Policies
Radnor, Pennsylvania – July 13, 2010 –Essent Guaranty, Inc., a mortgage insurer founded to provide private capital to America’s housing finance system, announced that its parent company, Essent Group Ltd., has secured an additional $100 million in capital commitments from new and current investors. The additional commitments raise Essent’s total equity commitments to $600 million. Essent Guaranty also announced substantial progress during the last quarter, including establishing active lender relationships, issuing mortgage insurance (MI) certificates, initiating Essent Online as its business-to-business web portal, and achieving approval to issue mortgage insurance nationwide.
“During 2009 and early 2010, the company focused on building our operating platform and obtaining the necessary regulatory and licensing approvals to open our doors for business at Essent Guaranty. Since our announcement on February 18th that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac approved Essent as a qualified mortgage insurer, we have turned our full attention to serving lender clients and homeowners,” said Mark Casale, President and CEO of Essent. “We have had an enormously productive period, highlighted by the issuance of our first mortgage insurance policies and successfully raising an additional $100 million in capital.”
“Lenders are recognizing the value in working with Essent because of our financial strength, seasoned leadership team, established platform and the commitment we bring to meeting client needs,” added Casale. “The additional committed capital will give our lender clients and policy holders even greater certainty about the financial strength and stability of Essent and clarity regarding the benefits of our insurance coverage.” In May 2009, Essent said it had raised an initial $500 million in capital commitments from a group of experienced financial services investors including Pine Brook Road Partners, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, PartnerRe, Renaissance Re, and others. With today’s announcement, Essent has $600 million in invested and committed equity funding.
Essent’s Vice Chairman Adolfo Marzol said, “Our additional capital raise, as well as the recent capital raises by other mortgage insurance companies, affirms the view we have shared with public policy makers that private capital is available to take prudent mortgage credit risk. We hope Essent will continue to play an important role in enhancing confidence that a sound mortgage finance system can attract capital into the private mortgage insurance industry to take and manage mortgage credit risk.”
The company also announced that its lender customers now have access to Essent’s ordering and servicing portal, Essent Online at www.essent.us. Essent launched the portal in May, which enables lenders to submit loans for MI, update loan parameters, and upload documents. Mortgage loan servicers can activate a certificate, transfer servicing and run reports using the portal.
“We are pleased that our lenders will be able to order mortgage insurance from Essent using a secure and easy web-based process through Essent Online. Our team has been working hard to engage our lender partners and establish an operating platform that supports the needs of our customers and makes doing business with Essent an easy and efficient experience,” said Casale.
Essent also has received state licensing approval in all 50 states and the District of Columbia and therefore is able to write mortgage insurance nationwide, facilitated by Essent’s participation in the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ expedited licensing pilot program.
Essent Guaranty, Inc. is a member of the Essent Group Ltd. family of companies, which offer private mortgage insurance and reinsurance coverage for single-family mortgage loans in the United States. The company has $600 million in invested and committed equity funding from a group of experienced financial services investors, including Pine Brook Road Partners, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, PartnerRe, and RenaissanceRe Ventures Ltd. Essent’s mission is to support homeownership for borrowers who can afford a home, but not a large down payment, by insuring mortgage lenders and investors from credit losses. The company will achieve this mission by providing private capital to take mortgage credit risk, and working as a risk management partner with lenders and other mortgage investors. Essent is actively engaging with prospective lender clients seeking a new mortgage insurance partner.
The company’s headquarters are in Radnor, Pennsylvania. Additional information may be found at www.essent.us.
contact: Janice Walker
JD Walker Communications, LLC