When united Companies Financial Corp., a $1.2 billion-asset subprime lender, decided to upgrade its loan origination system, the need for a scalable, open architecture was undeniable. The company's existing DOS- based origination system clearly couldn't meet the growing needs of the organization, which includes two wholesale divisions serving other financial institutions, brokers and correspondent banks; a retail division with more than 200 branches; and a manufactured housing division. "We didn't have any choice but to move forward," says Craig Hamachek, svp and CIO of United Companies.

The Baton Rouge, LA-based lender chose Gallagher Financial Systems's Millennium product, a Windows NT mortgage origination system with intelligent workflow capabilities. "We needed an open architecture, and we were looking for something that used our database technology, (Microsoft) SQL Server," Hamachek says.

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