GP Financial Corp., New York, parent of Greenpoint Bank, announced an agreement to acquire the wholesale home loan operation of BarclaysAmerican Mortgage Corp. for about $7 million.
"Our acquisition of this high-quality origination platform will enable us to expand our highly profitable nonconforming mortgage business in a careful and prudent way," said Thomas S. Johnson, chairman and chief executive of GP Financial.
"Barclays' national sales force and established relationships with mortgage brokers, mortgage bankers, and financial institutions throughout the country will enable us to originate loans for our portfolio through the introduction of our mortgage lending program in targeted cities.
"We also expect to continue Barclays' business of originating conforming and nonconforming mortgage loans for sale to the secondary market."
The Barclays Bank PLC subsidiary, based in Charlotte, N.C., originated about $1.7 billion in residential first mortgage loans through its wholesale operation during 1994. Virtually all were sold into the secondary market.
The GP Financial acquisition includes Barclays' three regional operations centers, 16 wholesale offices, and associated employees.
The new company will operate as GreenPoint Mortgage Corp., a subsidiary of GreenPoint Bank. The transaction will be structured as a purchase of certain assets and an assumption of certain liabilities, and is expected to close in July.
"This transaction will not require a significant amount of capital, but its strategic importance is substantial," said Mr. Johnson. "The experience Barclays has with limited-documentation lending strongly complements GreenPoint Bank's lending operations and will expand our capabilities in portfolio hedging and secondary markets."
GreenPoint Bank, formerly Green Point Savings Bank, specializes in a form of residential first mortgage lending based on less documentation of borrowers' income and assets than conventional lenders require. Limited- documentation lending commands higher rates and fees, and requires down payments of at least 25% of the purchase price. GreenPoint Bank says it is consistently one of the most profitable thrifts in the United States and one of the best capitalized.