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Hard Money Wholesaler Acquired

Michael Klein to acquire bankrupt Quality Home Loans

September 5, 2007

By staff

A hedge fund manager is bailing the country's biggest hard money wholesale lender out of bankruptcy.

Quality Home Loans announced Tuesday an agreement to be acquired by Michael Klein, a hedge fund manager. The deal, for which terms weren't disclosed, is subject to bankruptcy court approval.

Quality, which claims to be the largest U.S. residential hard money lender, petitioned for reorganization under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Aug. 21 in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California. Also filing bankruptcy were California TD Investments LLC, Golden State TD Investments LLC and QHL Holdings Fund Ten LLC -- three affiliated investment funds it manages.

"We have been attempting to continue our lending operations and our sale of loans despite the dramatic and continuing deterioration in the secondary markets," Quality Chief Executive Officer John T. Gaiser said in a statement at the time.

Agoura Hills, Calif.-based Quality, with 182 employees, replaced Gaiser with Alim Kassam as CEO, the announcement stated. Kassam, who will also serve as president, previously held investment banking jobs at Lehman Brothers and CapitalSource and has spent three years with Klein.

"The volume of loan applications at Quality is going through the roof as homeowners with significant equity and poor credit have fewer viable lenders to choose from in the current environment," Klein said in the press release. "This is a great time to be the 800-pound gorilla in the hard money space."

Quality, which limits loan-to-values to 65 percent, projects originations of $1 billion during the next 12 months. It acquired subprime lender Bankers Express Mortgage Inc. in July.

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