March 26, 1999, SANTA ANA, Calif.

The First American Financial Corporation (NYSE: FAF), the leading provider of real estate-related information products and services, announced today that its largest subsidiary, First American Title Insurance Company, has purchased Potter Title Company in Michigan from owners Ann Potter and her son, Craig Potter. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

Potter Title Company, which is located in the city of Lapeer, in Lapeer County, has been merged with First American's existing Lapeer County branch operation. In addition, Joseph Ghilardi, Michigan state counsel, has been appointed as manager.

Potter Title Company got its start when First American sold a copy of its Lapeer County title plant to Charlie Potter, who at that time was ending his involvement as part-owner in another Lapeer County title company. At the time of the acquisition, Potter Title had been an exclusive agent of First American.

"The acquisition of Potter Title better positions us to effectively compete in a service-sensitive market," said Gary L. Kermott, president of First American Title Insurance Company. "In addition, the acquisition has doubled our market share in the Lapeer County region."

The First American Financial Corporation, based in Santa Ana, Calif., is the nation's leading provider of real estate-related information products and 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, mortgage 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; First American Capital Management, an investment advisory firm; and First American Trust Company and First Security Thrift Company in Southern California. The company also offers automotive and direct-to-consumer credit reporting, multifamily resident screening and pre-employment screening through its Consumer Risk Management division. First American Financial has nearly 20,000 employees in more than 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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