Orange County Business Journal

First American Pulls Offer to Buy CoreLogic

Mark Mueller Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Santa Ana-based First American Financial Corp. is no longer interested in buying back neighboring data services and analytics company CoreLogic Inc., the title insurance company said on Tuesday.

First American Financial had offered to buy back all or part of CoreLogic in October. The offer followed an August announcement from CoreLogic that it was forming an independent committee to explore strategic options, including a possible merger or a sale.

First American Financial, which owns more than 8% of CoreLogic and is its largest shareholder, objected to that plan, which came amid a difficult real estate market and a rocky stock market.

First American Financial said at the time that CoreLogic should consider other options, such as selling some non-core businesses. First American said it would be willing to buy some business lines or the entire company in an outright sale.

Terms of any potential deal were not disclosed.

The offer to buy the entire company is now off the table, according to First American Financial. A sale of some non-core businesses still appears to be a possibility.

First American Financial did not disclose the reason for withdrawing its offer.

The two companies were created last year out of the split of First American Corp., in one of Orange County’s largest-ever spinoffs.

The split was an attempt to separate and better promote CoreLogic’s growing technology-focused business from First American’s dominant title insurance line of business.

The two companies still share the same office campus in Santa Ana, although CoreLogic has said it plans to move to the Irvine Spectrum next year.

Shares of CoreLogic were flat in mid-day trading on Tuesday; the company counts a market value of about $1.5 billion.

Shares of First American Financial, which also said on Tuesday it had settled a lawsuit with Bank of America and Fiserv Solutions Inc. over unpaid claims, were up more than 7% on the news. The company counts a market value of $1.3 billion.