Barclays Bank PLC, London, has announced an agreement to purchase EquiFirst Corp., the nonprime wholesale mortgage origination business of Regions Financial Corp., for approximately $225 million (£115 million).Barclays said it will finance the transaction out of existing cash resources and expects to achieve an annual after-tax return of more than 20% on the investment. EquiFirst, which originates its loans through more than 9,000 brokers in 47 states, will be combined with Barclays' mortgage servicing and capital markets capabilities to form a vertically integrated mortgage franchise, Barclays said. Dowd Ritter, president and chief executive of the Birmingham, Ala.-based Regions Financial, said the sale reflects a "tighter focus" on core businesses in the company's 16-state footprint in the South, the Midwest, and Texas. The companies can be found online at http://www.barclays.com and http://www.regions.com.

Subscribe Now

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the mortgage industry

30-Day Free Trial

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the mortgage industry