FNF to Buy Service Link

Fidelity National Financial Inc. here has agreed to acquire Service Link LP, a title insurance agency and provider of title and closing services to national lenders headquartered in Aliquippa, Pa.

As part of the transaction, FNF will also acquire Asset Link, a real estate-owned management and disposition company owned by Service Link.

Plans are for Service Link to operate as a distinct brand as part of FNF's Chicago Title unit. In some releases, Service Link has also been spelled ServiceLink. The company's website has it both ways.

Service Link was created in 1997 by Ray Pronto and its executives have described the firm as a closing management company. At its founding, the firm had five employees. It now has over 750.

"Service Link will also utilize FNF and its subsidiaries for its bundled service data needs surrounding the real estate and mortgage loan closing process, providing for cross-selling of products and services such as valuation and appraisal services, flood determinations, tax services and mortgage credit information services," said FNF chairman and chief executive William P. Foley II.

"Additionally, Asset Link provides FNF with another countercyclical revenue stream and improves FNF and Service Link's ability to more fully capture and serve emerging lender-driven purchase closing opportunities."

The company noted that by acquiring Service Link, it would gain centralized title and closing capabilities, plus access to national lender accounts, not only for refinancings, but for purchase transactions as well. FNF said Service Link's clients include six of the top 10 residential lenders by loan volume.

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