First American Acquires Western Pioneer Title Company


February 3, 2004, SANTA ANA, Calif.

First American Title Insurance Company, one of the nation’s largest title insurers and a member of The First American Corporation (NYSE: FAF) family of companies, today announced that it has acquired Western Pioneer Title Company of Eugene, Ore., for an unspecified amount.  Acquiring Western Pioneer establishes First American as the market share leader among title companies in Lane County, one of Oregon’s largest population centers and key real estate markets.

An exclusive agent of First American Title for many years, Western Pioneer employs 120 people at its five locations throughout Lane County.  Since its establishment in 1962, the company has grown to control approximately 35 percent local market share, largely attributable to its experienced staff and its commitment to customer service.  Jeff Lansdon, Western Pioneer’s general manager, will continue to oversee operations as First American’s Lane County manager.

“We are fortunate to have this opportunity to increase our operations in Western Oregon, and to work directly with Jeff [Lansdon] and the great people at Western Pioneer,” said Chuck O'Rourke, president of First American Title Insurance Company of Oregon.  “This is a profitable, well-managed company that we hope to strengthen further through title plant automation and implementation of cutting-edge First American technology, such as the FAST Transaction System.”

First American Title Insurance Company, the largest subsidiary of The First American Corporation (NYSE: FAF), traces its history to 1889. One of the largest title insurers in the nation, the company offers title services through nearly 1,200 offices and an extensive network of agents throughout the United States and abroad. The company has its headquarters in Santa Ana, Calif. Information about The First American Corporation's subsidiaries and an archive of its press releases can be found on the Internet at www.firstam.com.

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