Mortgage

Meet the Mr. Cooper Group: Nationstar completes merger with Washington Mutual parent WMIH

Company will change name to “Mr. Cooper Group” in the future

The merger between Nationstar Mortgage, the nonbank now known as Mr. Cooper, and WMIH Corp., the former parent company of Washington Mutual, is now complete.

The companies announced late Tuesday that the merger, which was announced earlier this year, is now finalized.

The companies did not provide specific financial details, but the deal’s original announcement pegged the merger as a $3.8 billion transaction.

The merger with WMIH caught many in the market off-guard, considering WMIH’s limited business. In 2012, WMIH emerged from bankruptcy as the successor to Washington Mutual, and is currently the direct parent of WM Mortgage Reinsurance.

According to WMIH’s website, the company had limited operations since it emerged from bankruptcy. During that time, WMIH mainly oversaw WM Mortgage Reinsurance’s legacy business, which has not written any new business since September 2008, and is currently operating in runoff mode.

But now, Nationstar and all of its subsidiaries, including Mr. Cooper, Xome and Champion Mortgage, are part of WMIH.

According to a release, the combined company will offer mortgage servicing and a “fully integrated loan originations platform,” buoyed by Xome, which provides various services in the real estate and mortgage markets.

The combined company will have more than 3 million customers and is one of the nation’s largest mortgage servicers, combining its own portfolio with subservicing contracts from several large operators.

The newly combined company will also lean hard into the Mr. Cooper brand, which Nationstar officially adopted last year and began moving toward way back in 2015.

According to the release, WMIH will soon change its name to Mr. Cooper Group and will change its stock symbol (which is traded on the NASDAQ) from “WMIH” to “COOP.”

The company doesn’t say when the name change will take place. In the mean time, the company will continue trading on the NASDAQ under the “WMIH” symbol. Nationstar’s shares will be delisted from the New York Stock Exchange as a result of the deal.

According to the company, WMIH (soon to be Mr. Cooper Group) is “evaluating” other administrative and corporate actions, including a reverse stock split.

As previously announced, Nationstar CEO and Chairman Jay Bray will continue to serve in those roles for the new company.

“We are pleased to complete this merger and begin our next phase of growth as an even stronger company, well-positioned to capitalize on the trends in the housing market and build on our leadership in the industry,” Bray said in a statement.

“Our company is moving forward with a strong financial foundation and a best-in-class integrated servicing and originations platform,” Bray continued. “We are excited about the opportunities ahead to expand our platform and create shareholder value by making homeownership simpler for millions of Americans.”

In conjunction with the completion of the merger, WMIH also made a series of changes to the company’s board beyond installing Bray as chairman.

According to the company, William Gallagher, Diane Glossman, Michael Renoff and Michael Willingham each resigned from the WMIH board of directors.

Bray will be joined on the board by existing board members Christopher Harrington, Tagar Olson and Steven Scheiwe, along with new board members Roy Guthrie, Robert Gidel and Michael Malone.

The board also appointed the following people to officer positions: Jay Bray (president and chief executive officer), Anthony Ebers (executive vice president and chief operating officer), Amar Patel (executive vice president and chief financial officer), Mike Rawls (executive vice president, servicing), and Anthony Villani (executive vice president and general counsel).

Timothy Jaeger (senior vice president), Charles Smith (executive vice president and assistant secretary), Peter Struck (senior vice president) and Weijia Wu (senior vice president) will remain as officers of the combined company.

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