Stewart acquires yet another title company

Acquisition of Devon Title Agency expands footprint in Michigan

There is no slowing down Stewart Title. The smallest of the “Big Four” title insurers announced Thursday that it had acquired Michigan-based Devon Title Agency, gaining scale in a hot housing market.

“The addition of Devon to the Stewart family of companies establishes us as one of the market leaders in Michigan,” Stewart Group president Steve Lessack said in a statement.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The acquisition of Devon is just the latest in Stewart’s recent string of acquisitions. Roughly a month ago Stewart acquired New Mexico-based Las Cruces Abstract and Title. Earlier in November the firm announced its acquisition of Rainier Title, bolstering its presence in the Pacific Northwest.

“The addition of Rainier creates additional growth opportunities for both teams and builds upon the momentum we’ve created across the country,” Lessack said in a statement at the time of the acquisition.

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Both of these acquisitions come just months after acquiring Stewart Title of Sacramento (STS) and Stewart Title of Placer (STP), two independently branded agents of Stewart Title Guaranty Company serving Sacramento, Placer, El Dorado and Yolo counties in September, and Title First Agency Inc, which is licensed to operate in 34 states and has strategic partnerships throughout the country, in July.

By investing in key markets across the country, Stewart will look to regain some of its market share. During the third quarter of 2021, Stewart’s market share was 8.2%. This is down from 9.6% at the end of 2020 and 10.6% at the close of 2019, according to the American Land Title Association, the industry’s primary trade group.

In addition, Stewart has been working to expand its data and analytics capabilities. Earlier this month it announced its acquisition of PropStream, a real estate data and analytics aggregator, for $175 million. This comes just a little over two months after the company announced its acquisition of Informative Research, a mortgage-focused data and analytics tech company based in Houston, for $192 million.

During the third quarter of 2021, Stewart reported a net income of $88.7 million compared to $55.9 million during the same time period a year prior. Additionally, the company reported $366.1 million in direct title revenue, up 31% from Q3 2020.

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