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1/28/2004
05:25 PM
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Fidelity Scoops Up Sanchez Computer Associates And Its Linux-Based Deposit And Loan System

Profile is one of the first banking systems to run on the open-source platform.

Fidelity National Financial Inc. announced Wednesday that it's acquiring Sanchez Computer Associates Inc., a provider of banking systems and outsourcing services for 400 financial institutions in 22 countries. Sanchez' core product, Profile, is a real-time banking-deposit and loan-processing system. The company has migrated Profile to the Linux operating system, making it one of the first banking systems to run on the open-source platform.

Fidelity National, which had revenue of $7.7 billion and earnings of $860 million last year, is the nation's largest title-insurance company. Last year, it acquired the financial-services division of Alltel Information Services, including mortgage loan servicing and the retail, commercial-lending, and wholesale banking systems; the mortgage system processes half of all U.S. residential mortgages.

Sanchez' strength internationally--about 30% of its clients are overseas-based financial institutions--complements Fidelity National's base of U.S. financial institutions, says Christine Barry, an analyst with Celent Communications.

The latest round of consolidation in the banking industry, led by the mergers of Bank of America-FleetBoston and J.P. Morgan Chase-Bank One, is causing banks to re-evaluate their technology infrastructures with an eye toward replacing obsolete technology. The Linux-based Profile system is more advanced technologically than the older, mainframe-based Alltel system, Barry says, enabling Fidelity to better compete against the likes of Aurum Technology, Fiserv, Metavante, and Jack Henry & Associates for banking systems and outsourcing services.

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