Lovell Minnick Partners acquires UniversalCIS

Lovell Minnick Partners has acquired a majority stake in UniversalCIS, a provider of credit data and related origination solutions in the mortgage industry.

Lovell Minnick Partners has acquired a majority stake in UniversalCIS, a provider of credit data and related origination solutions in the mortgage industry. No financial terms were disclosed. GCA Advisors served as financial advisor to UniversalCIS on the deal.

PRESS RELEASE

PHILADELPHIA, LOS ANGELES, NEW YORK – MARCH X, 2021 — Lovell Minnick Partners, LLC, a private equity firm focused on investments in financial services, financial technology and related business services, today announced it has acquired a majority stake in UniversalCIS (the “Company”), a market-leading, technology-enabled provider of credit data and related origination solutions in the mortgage industry. Moving forward, Lovell Minnick and UniversalCIS’ management team will work closely to leverage this investment to fuel continued growth of the Company and provide additional capital for future acquisitions. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Headquartered outside of Philadelphia with four additional operations centers across the country, UniversalCIS provides a leading technology platform that offers credit data and origination solutions to over 4,000 clients in the North American mortgage market including banks, non-bank mortgage lenders, credit unions and mortgage brokers. The platform is integrated into approximately 60 loan origination systems and serves as the first interaction point for clients in the loan application process.

“We are thrilled to partner with UniversalCIS’ management team to further grow and scale its unique offerings,” said Jason Barg, Partner at Lovell Minnick. “The UniversalCIS team has built an incredible company that plays a critical role in the mortgage origination process and provides best-in-class technology and customer service in a seamless, centralized manner. We believe the Company has tremendous growth potential and is well-positioned to benefit from tailwinds driving increased technology adoption and M&A activity in the mortgage market.”

The Company rebranded to UniversalCIS in January 2021 following the 2020 combination of Universal Credit Services, CIS Credit Solutions and Avantus, three longstanding credit technology and solutions providers to the mortgage originations industry. UniversalCIS also acquired mortgage appraisal technology provider SharperLending to enhance the Company’s software offerings. SharperLending operates as an independent business unit as a wholly owned subsidiary of UniversalCIS.

“Lovell Minnick has a strong track record of supporting financial technology companies in the mortgage and lending industry as they scale their businesses, making them an ideal partner for us,” said Perry Steiner, Chairman of UniversalCIS. “We’re excited to embark on the next chapter of UniversalCIS’ success as we collaborate with Lovell Minnick to continue to broaden and enhance our technology offerings for new clients and markets.”

Jerry Haftmann, CEO of UniversalCIS, added, “The UniversalCIS team has always been laser-focused on creating unique, effective technology for the mortgage industry, and this partnership with Lovell Minnick underscores our commitment to continuing to develop best-in-class services for key stakeholders at a greater breadth and depth than ever before.”

Former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and Former Secretary of the Navy John Dalton will continue to serve UniversalCIS, joining the Company’s board of directors. Steve Ozonian, an advisor to Lovell Minnick and industry veteran, will also join the board.

GCA Advisors served as exclusive financial advisor to UniversalCIS. Morgan, Lewis & Bockius served as legal counsel to Lovell Minnick, while McDonald Hopkins served as legal counsel to UniversalCIS.

About Lovell Minnick Partners
Lovell Minnick Partners is a private equity firm focused on investments in financial services, financial technology and related business services. The firm partners with outstanding management teams to help grow their companies and build value for investors through a combination of driving growth initiatives, strategic activity and operational improvements. Since Lovell Minnick’s inception in 1999, it has become a leader in its chosen space, raising $3.5 billion of committed capital from leading institutional investors including public and private pensions, insurance companies, endowments and foundations. To date, Lovell Minnick has completed more than 50 portfolio company investments.
Lovell Minnick seeks to invest in management-driven, growth-oriented companies that span the supply chains of investment products, insurance products, credit products and payments. Some of the areas in which the firm specializes include financial and insurance technology; payments; specialty finance; insurance brokerage and services; asset and wealth management; and related business services.

About UniversalCIS
UniversalCIS is a market leader in mortgage technology, credit reporting, and related products and solutions for mortgage originators. UniversalCIS has over 4,000 clients ranging from the largest bank and non-bank mortgage originators to credit unions and mortgage brokers. UniversalCIS prides itself on the best technology, solutions, and service in the industry. UniversalCIS was created through the merger of Universal Credit Services, CIS Credit Solutions, and Avantus. For more information, please visit: UniversalCIS.com