Black Knight acquires mortgage loan fee provider Ernst

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Black Knight added to its mortgage loan data product offerings by acquiring Ernst Publishing, an Albany, N.Y.-based provider of recording fee, transfer tax and title premium fee information.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

"By tightly integrating this technology and data into our origination product suite, we are able to better serve our existing clients," Rich Gagliano, president of Black Knight's Origination Technologies division, said in a press release. "This is another step forward in our mission to provide a truly end-to-end origination solution, which will be unparalleled in the industry."

Black Knight will augment its existing fee engine with Ernst's products, which also includes inspection fees and property tax data.

"Ernst and Black Knight share very similar goals — to create innovative solutions that transform the industry, support regulatory and compliance requirements, and create a better borrower experience," said Ernst CEO Greg Teal in the Black Knight press release. "We are confident that Black Knight will take the capabilities Ernst is known for and elevate them to the next level to help advance the industry."

In the third quarter, Black Knight's origination software business had revenue of $29.8 million, compared with $27.5 million in the second quarter and $26.5 million in the third quarter of 2017. That business line includes the Empower loan origination system, regulatory compliance software and e-closing capabilities.

Black Knight reported net earnings of $43 million in the third quarter.

In addition to mortgage data and software, Black Knight has a multiple listing service business. Acquiring Ernst may provide new opportunities for Black Knight in the real estate industry.

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M&A LOS Data and information management Compliance systems Real estate Black Knight