It’s been a big year for Black Knight’s Tom Sanzone, who led the company through a successful initial public offering in May, netting a total of $479.3 million in proceeds and watching its stock surge more than 40% from the IPO price. On June 1, Sanzone and his management team rang the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange to celebrate the landmark occasion.
Black Knight provides integrated technology, data and analytics to the mortgage industry, helping lenders and servicers better manage and mitigate risk, realize greater efficiencies and improve financial performance.
All 25 of the largest financial institutions in the U.S. use at least one Black Knight solution – with many using multiple solutions. Nearly 60% of all U.S. mortgages are serviced using Black Knight’s technology.
Black Knight is a relatively new company on the scene, formed in January 2014 when parent company Fidelity National Financial merged its ServiceLink business with LPS and formed the new business. Black Knight is affectionately named after Fidelity Chairman Bill Foley’s alma mater, West Point.
Sanzone has created a unique business model, coining the term “The Wheel,” to describe Black Knight’s suite of integrated technology solutions that support mortgage origination, servicing and default or disposition, its data hub and comprehensive analytics capabilities.
“These solutions help lenders and servicers better mitigate risk, increase efficiency and serve consumers throughout every phase of the mortgage lifecycle,” he said, adding the number of clients who use Black Knight products to support multiple areas of the loan lifecycle has increased.
The focus seems to be paying off. Black Knight reported an adjusted second-quarter revenue of $235 million, representing an increase of 7.5% year-over-year.
Sanzone has prioritized employee engagement and growth in the past year. Through regular employee town hall meetings, he provides important company updates and fields questions from his 4,000 employees. He also added webcasting capabilities throughout the company’s offices across the country, allowing remote and out-of-state employees to feel more connected, even from thousands of miles away. Also new is an employee stock purchase program.
To support employee development, Sanzone created Black Knight University, an interactive learning series that allows employees to augment their industry knowledge and expertise. By growing and developing employees internally and providing them with opportunities for advancement in their careers and knowledge base, the goal is allow Black Knight to grow and evolve as well.
Black Knight and its RealEC Technologies division responded to the significant requirements of the TILA-RESPA Integrated Mortgage Disclosure rule with Closing Insight, which is designed to streamline the closing process and support TRID compliance. Thirty percent of settlement agents registered for Closing Insight within the first 30 days of the registration launch, a number that continues to grow.
Closing Insight is built on Black Knight’s Exchange, an open-technology platform that automates the multiparty processes required to close a loan and includes integration, data management, decisioning support and workflow management. Black Knight’s goal is to help ensure clients were prepared for the Oct. 3 deadline and beyond.
Sanzone has more than 25 years of financial services experience. Prior to joining Black Knight, he worked as executive vice president at Booz Allen Hamilton and served in leadership roles at Merrill Lynch, Credit Suisse, Citigroup and Salomon Brothers, where he started as a programmer analyst and rose through the ranks. Throughout his career, he’s designed and run programs that have achieved over $1 billion in bottom-line savings.