First American announces internet-based e-commerce link

- Integrates loan processing software and online delivery system -

December 21, 1998, SANTA ANA, CALIFORNIA

The First American Financial Corporation (NYSE: FAF), the nation's leading provider of real estate-related financial and information services, today announced that it has completed the integration of The Loan Handler™, Contour Software's premier loan origination system; and FASTWeb, First American's Internet-based electronic ordering, routing and delivery system.

The new combination of these two systems allows mortgage originators using Contour Software's Windows-based loan origination software to seamlessly order and track title and closing services directly from First American Title Insurance Company's network of branch and agency operations nationwide. Roughly one in three loans in the industry flow from Contour's clients - mostly small to mid-size mortgage origination companies.

"The integration of Contour's products and First American's services in a platform that allows for e-commerce is a tremendous step for First American," said Parker Kennedy, president of First American Financial. "The union gives First American the opportunity to develop new title and escrow business, and helps us continue to add value to our existing relationships."

First American plans to integrate its FloodCert product into the FASTWeb online system by the first quarter of 1999 and eventually offer its credit-reporting component to Contour's customer base via the online application.

Contour Software President Scott Cooley added: "Providing this solution was a primary goal of First American when it acquired Contour in April 1998. It's exciting to see the integration of our loan origination software with First American's services. Our customers are quickly adopting the Internet as their primary e-commerce platform for all required mortgage related services. This integration places First American on the leading edge of the new electronic frontier."

Founded in 1982, Contour Software offers practical solutions for the mortgage loan finance industry. The company's flagship product, The Mortgage Banking Series, is a complete line of software products for every facet of mortgage lending, from qualification to servicing. With a customer base of 45,000 active seat licenses, Contour Software is a technology leader with the most complete line of software products and the most electronic commerce connections in the industry. Customers include mortgage bankers, credit unions, commercial banks and savings institutions. A wholly owned subsidiary of First American Real Estate Information Services, Contour has 115 employees and 40 additional sales representatives located in the United States.

The First American Financial Corporation, based in Santa Ana, Calif., is the nation's leading provider of real estate-related financial and information services. The corporation's subsidiaries include First American Title Insurance Company, a national and international title insurer; First American Real Estate Information Services, Inc., which offers tax monitoring, credit reporting, property data services, flood certification, field inspection services, appraisal services, loss mitigation services, mortgage loan origination and servicing systems, and mortgage document preparation nationally; First American Home Buyers Protection Corporation, a home warranty company; and First American Capital Management, an investment advisory firm. The corporation also operates First American Trust Company and First Security Thrift Company in Southern California. First American Financial has more than 17,000 employees in over 400 branch offices in the United States and abroad. Information about the company's subsidiaries and an archive of its press releases can be found on the Internet at


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