Caliber Home Loans plans $2B-plus IPO

Public offering could happen as soon as next week for Sanjiv Das-led lender

Texas-based mortgage lender Caliber Home Loans is the latest mortgage firm to ride the IPO wave, filing paperwork to potentially go public this year at a valuation north of $2 billion, according to a new report.

The company, owned by private equity firm Lone Star Funds, filed confidential IPO paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission and could make its public debut as soon as next week, the Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

Caliber, headed by CEO Sanjiv Das, has retail, wholesale and correspondent lending channels, and has developed a large book of business in the purchase space. It originated about $36 billion in mortgages during the first half of the year, according to Inside Mortgage Finance.

Though it sells many of its loans – $22 billion in MSRs year-to-date – Caliber is also one of the largest servicers in the country, according to data and analytics firm Recursion. As of Sept. 1, Caliber was the nation’s 13th-largest agency mortgage servicer, with about 2% market share, for a total of $136 billion. That placed Caliber just behind United Wholesale Mortgage.

Caliber is also among the 10 biggest GSE sellers, at nearly $34 billion in mortgages through August 2020. Caliber was the seventh-largest originator in 2019, issuing 136,000 mortgages, about 71,000 of them purchase.

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If Caliber does indeed go public this year, it would become the fourth mortgage firm to lay plans for an IPO in 2020 at a valuation over $2 billion. Rocket Mortgage, America’s largest lender, made its debut in the summer and is now trading at a $45 billion valuation. Within the last month, United Wholesale Mortgage, the second-largest originator in the country, made plans to go public in the fourth quarter at a $16.1 billion valuation; and loanDepot is rumored to go public at a valuation as high as $15 billion.

Mortgage lenders of all stripes have made a staggering amount of money in 2020, thanks largely to record-low interest rates and depressed inventory. Though rates are expected by many to tick up in 2021, several lenders are predicting near-record business well into next year.

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