This was an email our Charmain & CEO, Mike Barnett, sent to all employees last week:
I hope you all had a great Christmas and a Happy New Year with your family and friends.
I am proud to announce that in 2011, the Benchmark companies made a combined $7,606,154.22. It was another Outstanding year for our group, and I want to personally thank each one of you for contributing to our success.
AMC Correspondent had a great year. They purchased 10,906 loans in 2011 and volume reached 1.926 billion in total production, which is awesome considering the overall decrease in volume within the industry. The Correspondent group earned over 2 million in the fourth quarter – their best quarter of the year – and $2,398,310 total for the year despite a slow start. I want to congratulate the AE’s that gathered the business and the staff that always turns the loans in a timely manner. The secondary group did a great job of balancing our risk and locking our profits. I want to recognize the leadership team of Dan, Jason, Meredith and Todd for another exceptional year for AMC Correspondent. The Correspondent group currently has 107 employees, and I am very proud of the job that each one of them is doing.
AMC Retail ended the year with a combined profit of $80,432. Congratulations to Kelly Malatesta for being our top producer for the second year in a row! We are excited that AMC Retail is now under the leadership of Todd Potter, a former account executive for AMC Correspondent. One of the first things Todd did in his new role of National Sales Manager was add a Southeast Regional Manager, Mike Harley. Mike helped AMC Retail open two new branches in the fourth quarter – one in Augusta, Georgia and one in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. We look forward to watching this business continue to grow in 2012. Thanks to our loan officers, underwriters, processors, closers and assistants who did a great job handling all of the loan volume this year.
Benchmark Title recently opened its new Commercial Headquarters in Uptown Dallas. We are very proud of this new space and think it will be a big advantage having exam, escrow and marketing working together in one office. Due to increased overhead and costs associated with this new location, Benchmark Title was negative for the year. However, we feel that with additions made in 2011 to our commercial marketing and support team, we are in the best shape we have ever been. I also want to recognize the outstanding work done by our residential closing teams in Plano and the Park Cities.
Benchmark Bank had another excellent year, earning 1.5 million in the fourth quarter and $5,284,644 for the year. In the fourth quarter, Benchmark received two honors of which I am very proud – we were named the 7th fastest growing company in North Texas (SMU Cox School of Business/Dallas Business Journal), and we were voted BY OUR OWN FABULOUS EMPLOYEES one of the Top 100 Places to Work in DFW (Dallas Morning News). The Bank currently has 360 million in total assets. Congratulations to Mac, Kay and the entire mortgage warehouse staff for exceeding 1 billion in loans purchased in November 2011. Thanks to everyone at the bank for the great job you do – I love hearing our customers brag about you all. Benchmark Bank looks forward to another exceptional year in 2012 as we aim to open two new branches by the fourth quarter – one in Austin under the leadership of Rusty Edgar and one in Uptown very close to our new Title location.
THANK YOU ALL AGAIN FOR ALL YOU DO. BENCHMARK’S SUCCESS WOULD NOT BE POSSIBLE WITHOUT THE BEST GROUP OF PEOPLE IN THE INDUSTRY.