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First American RES Expands Internationally Through Strategic Investment In Australia-based RP Data

August 17, 2006

SANTA ANA, Calif., -- First American Real Estate Solutions (RES®) has entered into a strategic alliance with, and purchased a 38-percent interest in, privately-held RP Data Limited, the leading provider of property information for Australia and New Zealand. The contribution of rights to intellectual property and cash by First American RES will facilitate RP Data’s expansion in the Asia Pacific region.

“We are leveraging our assets and operations to expand globally,” said Parker S. Kennedy, chairman and chief executive officer of The First American Corporation. “First American has had considerable success adapting title insurance and related service offerings to overseas markets, and we anticipate similar success in providing our property data and analytics expertise in international markets.”

Headquartered in Brisbane, Australia, RP Data will serve as the base for First American RES’ expansion into Australia, New Zealand and Southeast Asia. First American RES’ products and services will be integrated into RP Data’s existing operations through a licensing agreement for First American RES’ intellectual property, platforms and technologies, including First American RES’ patent-pending automated valuation and collateral risk solutions. 

“We are excited about this opportunity to leverage First American’s software and product suite, and the new working capital made available to facilitate our business expansion,” said Graham Mirabito, chief executive officer of RP Data. “Customers of both companies will have the additional benefit of access to a vastly expanded database, which will include property information for all territories covered by both First American and RP Data.” 

Other shareholders of RP Data include the company’s founder, Ray Catelan, and Macquarie Bank, Australia’s leading investment bank.

“Through this relationship, RP Data will be among the first companies to introduce automated valuation models (AVMs) in Australia and New Zealand,” said George Livermore, president of The First American Corporation’s Property Information and Services Group. “The combination of market-leading real estate data from RP Data and proven, world-class valuation models from First American RES will allow us to better serve the evolving needs of real estate and mortgage finance customers in this region.”

As part of the alliance, First American will hold two of the five seats on RP Data’s board of directors.

The First American Corporation has operated in Australia since 1996 when it established First American Title Insurance Company of Australia Pty Limited. Conducting business under the name First Title, the company is the predominant provider of title insurance and related services in Australia and New Zealand.

Source: The First American Corporation



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