Ross Completes Option One Purchase

Now that WL Ross & Co. LLC is the proud owner of two midsized (mostly) nonprime servicing units, its next step is to buy a savings and loan - or two, or maybe even three.

Last month, WLR CEO Wilbur Ross signaled his intent to bottom-fish for both banks and savings and loans that are in need of capital. Mr. Ross said his financial backers include "foreign wealth funds" but declined to say which nations they reside in.

In a recent interview with this newspaper, Mr. Ross said his goal is to eventually enter the loan origination business.

Late last month, an affiliate of WL Ross closed on its $1.3 billion purchase of Option One Mortgage Corp., Irvine, Calif., which services $55 billion in A- to D loans.

OOMC's owner was tax preparation giant H&R Block. When the deal's closing was announced, H&R Block's share price rose 4%. There had been unconfirmed rumors in the market that the sale might fall apart. (c) 2008 Mortgage Servicing News and SourceMedia, Inc. All Rights Reserved. http://www.mortgageservicingnews.com/ http://www.sourcemedia.com/

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