Deeper Thoughts
Independent Businesses Remain the Backbone of the Mortgage Industry – July 20th, 2021

Issue #82: Independent Businesses Remain the Backbone of the Mortgage Industry

The M&A stories continue to march through the headlines of our industry trade publications. It’s been a busy year for this kind of activity as many of the businesses that succeeded in the past 24 months either seek to double down by making acquisitions, or by cashing in while the getting’s good. We all love to see these stories. This is the exciting stuff of business—dreams being realized, entrepreneurs being rewarded…growth and success. It’s a least part of the reason anyone starts and builds a business.

And although the headlines tend to focus on the “big fish” or investor making the acquisition, it’s the payoff for the company being acquired that helps motivate every entrepreneur every day. I won’t say it’s the sole motivation—there are a lot of great reasons to found and build a business, and not all involve turning a profit. But it’s certainly part of the equation.

This is the fulcrum that drives innovation and inspires us to grind through the tough times or seemingly insurmountable challenges. And for every company that’s just been acquired, there are hundreds just getting started on their journey, or which have been pounding away, day after day, for months, years or even decades. 

And it’s during that journey that the industry moves forward. All of the little innovations; the mistakes that lead to great improvements and achievements…they all serve as the foundations for these overnight success stories years-in-the-making. I’d be willing to bet that many of the best practices used in our industry today are the result of innovations introduced by growing, privately held businesses.

The mortgage industry is pretty unique in many ways. One of those ways is its lack of publicly traded corporations. There are some, and more coming. But ours, for a number of reasons, remains primarily privately held. Even the larger companies are more likely than not to be privately held. And although this is no knock on the concept of public companies, not answering to shareholders is one less burden for a private owner or CEO—and one less constraint to innovation and qualified risk taking.

Here’s to the companies getting acquired or making the acquisition in 2021—job well done! And here’s also to all of the other companies that continue to march forward, pushing the industry to greater heights in the process. Cheers!

Of course, we’d like your input on this as well. Got an idea or a topic for the upcoming summer series of LLL? Send it our way! Email me at