Goldwater Bank Brings in New Capital

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An Affinity Partnership: Weststar Mortgage Corporation & Goldwater Bank. N.A.

We are excited to announce that Kent Wiechert, owner and President of Weststar Mortgage Corporation has acquired Goldwater Bank, N.A. in a stock purchase that when made public will become an important piece of industry history. While transactions where banks are buying mortgage companies and/or other banks have been commonplace in the industry since the financial crisis, regulatory authorization for a mortgage company (or its sole owner) purchasing a controlling interest in a nationally chartered bank is relatively unheard of, to say the least. This exciting development marks a historic milestone in both companies’ stories, one that every one of us can be excited by and take a moment to savor; for the past 5 years the entire team at Goldwater Bank have focused tirelessly to position the Bank and its mortgage division for an opportunity such as this. “I credit the perseverance of the Bank’s staff, unwavering will and dedication of the Bank’s executive leadership team and the resolve of the Board of Directors coupled with the focus of the OCC’s Special Supervision Division who refused to let the consent order issued in 2010 be the final chapter in the Bank’s story. We have emerged a stronger and better bank from this experience,” says Julie Merhege, President of Goldwater Bank “We look forward to pair our commercial bank and mortgage lending platform with Weststar’s mortgage business and bring a more unique approach in Banking and provide outstanding service to customers,” says Merhege.

Weststar Mortgage Corporation is a privately owned company established in 1983 in Albuquerque, New Mexico where it maintains corporate headquarters to this day. The firm’s primary initial focus was to develop specialized software that enabled the company to deliver best of breed loan servicing solutions to clients who offered seller financing as an alternative to traditional real estate financing. Today, Weststar services over 20,000 loan servicing customers across most of the United States. Beginning in the early 1990’s, the business grew to include a successful retail mortgage origination channel. Today, Weststar Mortgage originates retail mortgage loans in over 30 states covering nearly every market outside of the Eastern Seaboard. In 2015, Weststar Mortgage is on track to originate in excess of $1 billion.

“We are very excited about this new affiliation, and look forward to offering clients even more products and services through our new relationship with Goldwater Bank,” says Mr. Wiechert, President and owner of Weststar Mortgage Corporation.

On August 28th, 2015, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) issued a letter to Goldwater Bank concurring to a plan submitted by the Bank and Weststar Mortgage almost a year prior which allowed Mr. Wiechert to acquire a controlling interest in the Bank. The details of the plan include a host of provisions that will align the two firms around their common and complementary business lines; including the integration of the Weststar’s highly successful retail mortgage origination channel into the bank’s already established mortgage division.

“By the time we’ve fully executed the plan approved by the OCC the two companies will employ more than 600 professionals spanning 40 states and all aspects of the banking, lending and loan servicing disciplines,” says Mr. Wiechert.

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Erin Ciaravino
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