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Growing Firm Scores Venture Capital Investment

Second Curve invests in Stonegate Mortgage

March 12, 2010

By staff

A growing mortgage lender and servicer announced an equity investment by a venture capital firm. During the last few years, the Indiana-based mortgage company has acquired two other companies, expanded its retail branch program and pushed headcount past 100.

In a news release today, Stonegate Mortgage Corp. said it received an equity investment from a private equity firm out of Indianapolis.

That firm is Second Curve Partners LLC, which says it works with small to moderate-sized companies to develop growth strategies.

The amount and terms of the investment were not disclosed.

Stonegate, based in Fishers, Ind., says its beginning can be traced back to Ohio in 1964.

In 2007, it acquired mortgage broker 1st Signature Lending -- bringing its production to around $100 million annually. In June 2009, Stonegate acquired Swain Mortgage Co., a Mansfield, Ohio-based servicer with a servicing portfolio of more than 2,000 loans for $175 million. By the time of the Swain acquisition, annual volume had grown to $400 million.

Stonegate expanded its affiliate mortgage banking program outside of Indiana in 2008. The program was described as a hybrid retail model that provides wholesale pricing and creates multiple revenue opportunities for affiliate branches

Today, Stonegate reports more than 100 employees.

The company's president, Jim Cutillo, reportedly was a GMAC Residential Funding director, while other executives at the firm have included the former chairman of the Mortgage Bankers Association and former executives from IndyMac Bank and Waterfield Financial.

Stonegate "is ranked as one of the largest mortgage lenders in the State of Indiana" and one of the largest privately held lenders in the central part of the country, today's statement said. The company reportedly is licensed in 14 states and approved as a lender by Fannie Mae, Ginnie Mae and the Federal Housing Administration.

"We invest in companies that have a solid business model, strong management teams and the opportunity for exponential growth," Second Curve Principal Scott Mumphrey said in the statement. "Stonegate meets all three."

Mumphrey said Stonegate has managed to grow and stay profitable during one of the most challenging periods for the mortgage industry.

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