First American Supports Beta Launch of RE3W

— Revolutionary Commercial Real Estate Application Uses Microsoft Technology to Deliver Seamless Transactions, Faster Closings —


October 26, 2004, SANTA ANA, Calif.

The First American Corporation (NYSE: FAF) today announced its support for the beta launch of RE3W Version 1.0, an Internet-based, commercial real estate application developed by independent software vendor RE3W WorldWide Limited (www.RE3W.com).   

Using Microsoft’s .NET capabilities to support extensible markup language (XML) and Web services, RE3W Version 1.0 integrates Internet functionality with Microsoft business applications unlike any other application in the commercial real estate arena, increasing productivity and profitability for all commercial real estate participants seeking a competitive edge in the highly fragmented, $100 trillion industry.

RE3W, which began developing its Internet technology platform four years ago, is the creation of commercial real estate industry veteran Richard “Dick” Frost. With startup investment capital from First American and others, Frost commenced development of RE3W, or “Real Estate on the World Wide Web,” with the singular purpose of creating technology to shorten commercial real estate sales transaction time from months to days. 

“Dick Frost knew there had to be a better way for those of us involved in commercial real estate to deal with one another, and from what I’ve seen, RE3W Version 1.0 is a solid step toward accomplishing that goal,” said Parker S. Kennedy, chairman and chief executive officer of The First American Corporation.  “As the application matures, its acceptance and use throughout the commercial real estate industry will ultimately change the way the industry does business.  First American’s investment in RE3W is consistent with our commitment to continued innovation and to helping make the best possible products available for our clients.”

A global leader in real estate data and services, First American is a principal investor in RE3W and will be instrumental in introducing the RE3W application to the real estate industry through its National Commercial Services sales channels.

Frost recalled, “I was envisioning the development of the application when I started working with Microsoft to strategize about using Web services to develop a new kind of commercial real estate solution.   We eventually demonstrated how our application could shorten the commercial real estate transaction process by combining our proprietary methodologies and Microsoft’s .NET technology to bring all the pieces of the transaction puzzle together into a single, digitally secure ‘REFile™’ or, ‘Real Estate File.’  

“RE3W is using Web services and .NET as a foundation to drive innovation in the commercial real estate market,” said Vic Gundotra, General Manager, Platform Strategy Group, Microsoft Corp.  “The company’s new real estate application highlights the benefits of using Web services to deliver a more dynamic experience to customers and partners.” 

Version 1.0 of the RE3W application focuses on the origination portion of the transaction process, using Microsoft .NET technology to tie people, processes and systems together in an integrated workflow.  As a part of the development process, RE3W worked with Microsoft to develop demonstrations of the new application.  RE3W expects to have more than 5,500 subscribers using the application by mid-2005, an adoption rate that will validate the product and drive the further development of the technology.

Frost is confident that many commercial real estate professionals will participate as beta testers of RE3W Beta Version 1.0 and move toward early adoption of the application.  “It just makes sense to embrace a new way of doing things that will save time,” said Frost.  “That’s what RE3W is all about.  Making things easier and faster, and allowing commercial real estate professionals to focus on making more money.  Who wouldn’t sign up?”

With the launch of its beta phase, RE3W is actively seeking a limited number of commercial real estate professionals interested in becoming beta testers. Those interested should visit www.RE3W.com for more information.  

About RE3W

Founded in 2000, RE3W (www.RE3W.com), is an internet-based, commercial real estate application that uses proprietary search technology to seamlessly integrate the transaction process (origination, negotiation and closing) into a secure, digital file allowing subscribers to monitor deal flow, while communicating and sharing selected data with clients, staff, service providers and investors.

About First American

The First American Corporation (NYSE: FAF), is a Fortune 500 company that traces its history to 1889. As the nation’s largest data provider, the company supplies businesses and consumers with information resources in connection with the major economic events of people’s lives, such as getting a job; renting an apartment; buying a car, house, boat or airplane; securing a mortgage; opening or buying a business; and planning for retirement. The First American Family of Companies, many of which command leading market share positions in their respective industries, operate within six primary business segments including: Title Insurance and Services, Specialty Insurance, Mortgage Information, Property Information, Credit Information and Screening Information. With revenues of $6.21 billion in 2003, First American has 29,000 employees in approximately 1,800 offices throughout the United States and abroad. More information about the company and an archive of its press releases can be found at www.firstam.com.

 

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