First American Restructures Its Real Estate Information And Services Segment


February 7, 2000, SANTA ANA, Calif.

The First American Financial Corporation (NYSE: FAF), the nation's leading provider of business information and related products and services, today announced that it has restructured its real estate information and services segment in an effort to maximize economies of scale and more efficiently use shared resources among its internal companies.

The nation's leading provider of credit information to the mortgage industry, First American CREDCO, along with First American Nationwide Documents, the nation's largest mortgage loan document preparation company, have been combined with First American's Mortgage Administration companies to create First American's Mortgage Information Services group. Barry Sando, who previously served as president of the mortgage administration group, will now serve as president of this new group. 

First American also announced that it has integrated its appraisal services company into its Database Information and Services group led by Dennis Gilmore. "The addition of appraisal to the Database Information and Services group is a natural fit," said Gilmore. "By combining our automated and manual appraisal offerings we hope to create tremendous business efficiencies." 

Don Robert, who previously served as president of the now consolidated Mortgage Origination Services division and the consumer products group, will now concentrate his leadership efforts on operating First American's Consumer Information and Services segment. 

"It makes sense to consolidate our mortgage group as we move closer to offering centralized services to our national lenders," said John Long, president of First American Real Estate Information Services. "This restructuring reflects the changing focus of First American's business and the integration of companies we've acquired over the past two years. 

"Since First American initially announced the establishment of its Consumer Information and Services segment in July 1999 the segment has grown considerably," added Long. "Don Robert has been very successful in overseeing our mortgage origination division and the emergence of our consumer segment. His experience makes him the perfect choice to lead this dynamic new segment as it becomes a larger part of our business." 

First American's Consumer Information and Services segment, which was established to add diversified revenue outside the interest-rate-sensitive real estate market, has experienced significant growth. The company has made numerous previously announced acquisitions including Tele-Track Inc, the nation's leading provider of subprime consumer credit information; The Registry Inc., the nation's largest resident screening company; Ace Information Services Inc., a Florida-based resident screening company; CIC Inc., a national pre-employment screening company; Five Star Insurance Company, a property and casualty insurance underwriter; and several other companies that offer services that operate independent of, or counter to, interest-rate sensitive markets. 

"Our growing consumer services segment includes non-cyclical and counter-cyclical businesses that complement our real estate services and title operations," said Tom Klemens, chief financial officer for First American Financial. "As this segment continues to grow and add more, higher-margin business, we expect to reduce volatility and receive from the market a valuation multiple comparable to other information services companies." 

The First American Financial Corporation, based in Santa Ana, Calif., is the nation's leading provider of business information and related products and services. The corporation's three primary business segments include: title information and services; real estate information and services, which includes mortgage information services, and database products and services; and consumer information and services, which provides home warranties; automotive, subprime and direct-to-consumer credit reporting; property and casualty insurance; property and automotive insurance tracking services; resident screening; pre-employment screening; lender-placed flood and hazard insurance; investment advisory; and trust and banking services. Information about the company and an archive of its press releases can be found on the Internet at www.firstam.com

Any statements in this document that look forward in time involve risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to the following: the effect of interest rate fluctuations; changes in the performance of the real estate markets; the effect of changing economic conditions; general volatility in the capital markets; the demand for and the acceptance of the company's products; changes in applicable government regulations; continued consolidation among the company's significant customers; consolidation among significant competitors: the impact of the legal proceedings commenced by the California attorney general and related litigation; the continued ability to identify businesses to be acquired; and changes in the company's ability to integrate businesses which it acquires. The company's actual results, performance or achievement could differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, any forward-looking statements, and, accordingly, no assurances can be given that any of the events anticipated by the forward-looking statements will transpire or occur or, if any of them do, what impact they will have on the results of operations or financial condition of the company.

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