First American Title Insurance Company Acquires United General Title Insurance Company

February 24, 2005

SANTA ANA, Calif. and DENVER, /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- First American Title Insurance Company has acquired privately held United General Financial Services, Inc., and its subsidiary companies, including United General Title Insurance Company, for an undisclosed purchase price. The acquisition closed Feb. 18, 2005.

Headquartered in Denver, United General has been one of the nation's fastest growing title insurers since its purchase by current president and chief executive officer John P. Dwyer and key management personnel in 1995. Gross revenues increased from approximately $38 million in 1995 to $208 million in 2004. A licensed title insurance underwriter in 36 states and the District of Columbia, United General has an extensive network of affiliated agents across the U.S. and direct office operations in California.

According to 2003 market share statistics published by the American Land Title Association, United General is the 6th largest title insurer by geographic coverage in the country with 1.64 percent national market share. It is well-established in the key title insurance markets of California, New York, Texas and Florida. In 2004, Demotech, Inc., a financial analysis and actuarial firm independent of the insurers it reviews, rated United General as "A' A Prime. Unsurpassed. Strongly recommended for commercial real estate transactions."

"United General is a tremendous addition to the First American family of companies and an important component of our growth strategies," said Gary L. Kermott, president of First American Title Insurance Company. "It is a well-run, profitable company with a solid reputation, and it has made significant gains in major markets across the country. Its commitment to integrity and quality service are well-aligned with First American's corporate values, and we look forward to helping further row United General into a major national brand."

Established in Louisiana in 1983, United General was redomiciled in Colorado in 1999. In 2001, the company formed RealAlliance(R), a joint venture between United General and two leading title insurance underwriters operating nationally through a network of local title agents. RealAlliance uses a proprietary transaction management system that enables local, independent agents to work seamlessly with other independent agents to perform transactions across 48 states and in every major U.S. real estate market.

"In this time of industry change and transition, we have found in First American a company that is committed to the core values of the industry -- its tradition, history and agents -- while being squarely focused on and leading the evolution of the industry," said John P. Dwyer, president and chief executive officer of United General Financial Services and United General Title Insurance Company. "First American's financial strength and industry expertise considerably enhance our ability to grow our business and provide significant additional resources to our agents, while remaining ever-focused on our core principles and objectives."

Dwyer will continue to manage United General as company president and hold the position of regional vice president with First American Title Insurance Company. In addition to Dwyer, all key management personnel will continue with United General.

Source: The First American Corporation; United General Financial

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