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Fidelity CEO: Black Knight had strong first quarter

LPS acquisition goes smoothly

profits up

Fidelity National Financial (FNF) reported first-quarter adjusted net earnings of $84 million, or $0.30 per diluted share, beating estimates by $0.12. This compares to 2013 first quarter adjusted net earnings of $102 million, or $0.44 per diluted share.

Total revenue was $2.1 billion in the first quarter versus $2.0 billion in the first quarter of 2013, at the leading provider of title insurance, technology and transaction services to the real estate and mortgage industries.

First quarter 2014 adjusted net earnings exclude $106 million of after-tax, unusual or one-time items, primarily related to the acquisition of Lender Processing Services, Inc., now Black Knight Financial Services, and a one-time Ceridian legal settlement.

Chairman William P. Foley, II said: "Purchase orders increased approximately 1.5% for the first quarter of 2014 versus the prior year first quarter and increased by more than 3% in the first three weeks of April."

"Our title business will benefit from a continued improvement in the residential purchase market," he said adding, "Black Knight had a strong first quarter under our ownership."

The company also reported GAAP net loss of $22 million, or ($0.08) per diluted share, for the first quarter versus net earnings of $90 million, or $0.39 per diluted share in the first quarter of 2013.

In their core operations, Fidelity National reported total revenue of $1.4 billion in Q1 2014, unchanged from $1.4 billion in the first quarter 2013.

"The integration of LPS has progressed smoothly and we uncovered further cost synergies during the first quarter," said Foley. "We are now confident in raising our total cost synergy target to $290 million, with $215 million of that target already achieved by the end of the first quarter."

Other core operations numbers:

  • Adjusted EBITDA of $148 million for the first quarter versus adjusted EBITDA of $179 million for the first quarter of 2013
  • Adjusted net earnings of $74 million, or $0.26 per diluted share, for the first quarter versus adjusted net earnings of $98 million, or $0.42 per diluted share, in the first quarter of 2013
  • Adjusted first quarter 2014 net earnings exclude $80 million of unusual or one-time items, including $117 million of costs and expenses related to the acquisition of LPS, $75 million in purchase price amortization and a legal accrual of $2 million, less a $51 million non-controlling interest credit related to the LPS items, a $61 million tax impact from the adjustments and $2 million of realized gains
  • First quarter free cash flow used of $39 million versus $36 million used in the first quarter of 2013

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