CHARLOTTE, N.C., September 17, 2008 – Mortech (www.mortech-inc.com) and its President Don Kracl were presented the ‘Rick Stiegler Innovator of the Year’ Award at the 2008 LendingTree Partner Summit. The prestigious award, named after LendingTree’s founding chief technology officer, was given by Chairman and CEO Doug Lebda before more than 150 mortgage industry executives during the 10th annual Summit held in Charlotte, N.C. September 8 – 11.
Rick Stiegler was one of the first employees at LendingTree and played an instrumental role in the development of the company. As the founding chief technology officer, Mr. Stiegler created the company’s patented software that matches consumers with lenders who compete for their business. His hard work and determination to win despite obstacles was a mantra he lived by each day prior to his untimely death in 2004. He was a true innovator who relished a challenge and expected those around him to follow or lead in the same fashion. The LendingTree team cherished his passion and fearlessness and his legacy continues to live on in the hearts of many.
Led by mortgage industry veteran Don Kracl, Mortech has been providing mortgage technology solutions since 1987. Mortech and LendingTree began working together in a small capacity starting in 2004. Later that year, after a late night brainstorm session with the LendingTree team, Mr. Kracl and the Mortech Chief Technology Officer Jason Steele quickly sketched out a new product to help the more than 200 lenders in the LendingTree exchange with an effective loan pricing and lead management system. The innovative technology was named Marksman and today, stands as an industry leading software that simplifies the complex and time-consuming routines associated with daily pricing, product decisioning and prospect management. In 2006, LendingTree conducted an extensive evaluation of such systems and named Mortech as a preferred provider in early 2007. To date, thousands of lenders from across the country select Marksman to automate the loan process, manage sales cycles and increase loan close ratios dramatically.
“The Innovator of the Year award is an important way for us to recognize a partner whose hard work and determination follow the same suit as Rick’s,” said Mr. Lebda. “Mortech jumped at the opportunity to create a new technology that helps our lender partners improve their business efficiency and accuracy when working with LendingTree borrowers. We value our partnership with Mortech and are honored to present them with the highest award given by LendingTree.”
“We are extremely honored to be recognized with such a prominent distinction from LendingTree,” said Mr. Kracl. “This is one of the proudest moments for Mortech. An acknowledgement of such high stature truly exemplifies our commitment to merging technology with traditional business processes.”
About LendingTree, LLC
LendingTree, LLC is the nation’s leading online lending exchange, providing a marketplace that connects consumers with multiple lenders that compete for their business. Since inception, LendingTree has facilitated more than 23 million loan requests and $185 billion in closed loan transactions. LendingTree provides access to lenders offering mortgages and refinance loans, home equity loans/lines of credit, auto loans, personal loans and credit cards via www.lendingtree.com and 800-555-TREE.
Launched in 1998 with headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina, LendingTree also owns and operates LendingTree Loans sm, GetSmart.com, and HomeLoanCenter.com. LendingTree is a business of Tree.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: TREE).