Page 6                                    Inside Mortgage Technology                         January 19, 2007

saw the need for a better machine/human relationship       integrate PushMX with Point, Calyx’s industry-
in the mortgage industry.                                  leading point-of-sale system. That has helped the
     After spending months in development,                 BRMS provider enjoy steady market penetration over
                                                           the past two years.
PushMX was launched in late 2004. But as with all
BRMS products, it takes a lot of work to get noticed            The technology challenges mortgage firms face
by mortgage firms.                                         in 2007, in Haritos’ opinion, include “where to invest
                                                           and whether or not to invest.” Efficiency, though, is
Not All Are Alike                                          not the goal, in his view. The goal is to make more
                                                           money, he said. That comes about by developing a
      For many mortgage executives, all BRMS look          plan to bring in more business and cut expenses.
alike. But that may be changing as a few mortgage          Executives then buy technologies to best meet those
firms have opted out of licensing agreements early to      goals, Haritos advised.
swap systems or add BRMS products to their
proceses.                                                  Firm Gives Away Code for
      One differentiator PushMX can leverage is that
its technology is based on the time-tested benchmarks
                                                           Building Interface Applications
of Six Sigma and ISO 9000. This quality control,                Lenders like nothing better than a vendor that
standard administered by the International                 sweetens the pie. With that in mind, Synechron, one
Organization for Standardization, has it roots             of the largest financial services outsourcing
manufacturing. But its principals are germane to           companies in the U.S., has decided to give its
software products as well. ISO 9000 deals with how a       customers free application building tools.
product is produced rather than how it is designed.             The NJ-based firm has developed an armada of
Manufacturing loans needs the same efficient               proprietary tools to integrate software and develop
workflow rules as manufacturing widgets, Haritos           reporting systems, among a whole host of other
told us.                                                   functions. Synechron is making these “libraries” or
      Yet, mortgage companies can’t prosper without        “frameworks” available to its existing customers as
becoming more than their products, which is why            well as using them to recruit new clients, said COO
Haritos credits his firm’s success on treating             Zia Bhutta.
customers as partners. “The fact that we have this              These libraries are loosely coupled components
great software that does all these great things, in and    and Web services that mortgage firms can use to
of itself, is not valuable,” he said.                      build interfaces, maintain and optimize loan
      That view parallels one of technology’s basic        origination systems, and reduce the time needed to
tenements: You only get smart results from smart           perform infrastructure chores.
tools when smart people use them. That’s why                    “These are very rich frameworks,” Bhutta told
Haritos shares his company’s intellectual expertise        us. He likened the frameworks to a plumber letting
with his customers, a client base of 800 with about        customers use his tools.
10,000 users.
                                                           Credit Interfaces
Added Revenue
                                                                One library set deals with credit interfaces.
     Sunset Mortgage, a mid-tier net branch                Mortgage firms could use direct interfaces with the
company, is a firm believer in PushMX. “Since every        credit bureaus or via an integrated link offered by
task and milestone associated with a loan is time
                                                           some point-of-sale firms, such as Ellie Mae’s ePass.
stamped and registered to the owner of that action, I
can drill down into the root cause of any potential             Synechron is offering an appliance, or stand
problem and address it immediately with the right          alone hardware that contains the software tools,
person before it causes a loan to be delayed or            which can take feeds from different credit sources,
cancelled,” said Larry Army, the company’s regional        such as First American Credco or Krolls Factual
vice president, in a white paper.                          Data, and automatically map them into ready-to-use
     Florida-based Provident Home Mortgage was             interfaces.
able to bring in up to $15,000 in additional revenue            “The end goal is to reduce the [work] it takes a
each month just by reducing its cycle times by five        company to build an application,” Bhutta said.
days.                                                           The credit library is one of the two available
     Haritos struck a deal in 2005 with Calyx to           plug-and-in play appliances; the other contains the

                           NOT FOR DUPLICATION
 Page 7                                      Inside Mortgage Technology                          January 19, 2007

framework for building customer relationship                 has not been used in the LendingTree online
management systems that mortgage firms can use to            exchange for some time. As we have consistently
build and maintain broker and correspondent                  maintained throughout this lawsuit, the technology in
systems.                                                     question was not a critical component of the
     Synechron is working on similar appliances for          LendingTree online exchange.”
developing automated valuation models and                          The court may also order a permanent injunction
interfaces to automated underwriting systems, such as        against LendingTree.
those from ILOG and Mindbox, as well as to Fannie                  “We remain committed to protecting that
Mae and Freddie Mac.                                         intellectual property and we will take the steps
     While users of the appliances will not have to          necessary to ensure that LendingTree cannot continue
build applications from scratch, they still will have to     to willfully infringe on our patent,” said Michele
customize the tools to fit the ways they want to use         Buschman, acting CEO of IMX.
the data the applications will produce.
Good for Business
                                                             Vendor News Roundup
                                                                  Ellie Mae has formed a new banker division that
     It would seem that Synechron, which is doing a
                                                             will focus solely on the company’s banker and lender
healthy business in building custom applications, is
giving away the means to provide IT outsourcing
                                                                  Mortgage Builder Software has released the
     Bhutta agreed that’s happening to a certain
                                                             latest version of its loan origination software. Version
degree, but large companies always have some in-
                                                             3.6 includes 80 new features and more than 230
house custom work underway and can find value in
using Synechron’s tools without jeopardizing
Synechron’s projects. For instance, Synechron could
be building a LOS, but a number of customization                  Associated Software Consultants will expand
and data integration points will still need the attention    its workshop series this year to include pooling,
of in-house IT staff.                                        hedging and advanced support. Workshops are being
                                                             scheduled for Dallas, Houston and Atlantic City.
     Synechron may offer the libraries for sale
eventually, but only if it can be done without
compromising its services business, he added.                     NextStudent, a Phoenix-based education
                                                             funding company, is offering free mortgage
IMX Patent Case Upheld;                                      calculators to lenders and brokers for use on their
                                                             Web sites. See for
Judge Doubles Damages                                        more details.
     A Delaware district court judge has upheld a
jury verdict that LendingTree infringed on patents           PHH, from page one
held by vendor IMX, Inc. The case is one of two of           used to support business operations.
the most celebrated patent infringement cases to hit
                                                                  These fixed costs are hard on firms’ balance
the mortgage industry.
                                                             sheets, especially banks, and combined with thin
     Chief Judge Sue Robinson not only affirmed the          margins weighing on profits, many companies are
jury verdict delivered after a two-week trial last           taking a hard look at outsourcing every part of loan
January, she raised the damages award by 50 percent          origination, processing, closing and delivery to
to $8.7 million, and awarded pre- and post-judgment          investors.
interest.                                                         In taking the private label route, companies can
     A jury found Charlotte-based LendingTree                stabilize their margins by converting fixed costs into
guilty of using IMX intellectual property to provide a       variable costs while getting the quality customer
real-time Internet-enabled network through which             service of state-of-the technology.
borrowers apply for loans.                                        “This allows them to expand their origination
     “We are disappointed that the court in Delaware         channels to, what our partners would say, accelerate
has declined to overturn the jury’s verdict of               profitable growth,” McCarthy told us.
infringement,” LendingTree said in a written                      The more challenging market conditions have
statement. “The technology at the basis of the lawsuit       led to an increase in inquiries into PHH’s private

                            NOT FOR DUPLICATION

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