Gleacher ends search for a buyer; to sell mortgage unit

Fri Feb 15, 2013 6:59am EST

Feb 15 (Reuters) - Investment bank Gleacher & Co Inc said it agreed to sell its mortgage lending unit ClearPoint to Ocwen Financial Corp and ended its search for a potential capital infusion or a buyer.

Gleacher, which did not disclose ClearPoint's sale price, said it expects the deal to close in the first quarter.

The company, founded by merger and acquisition veteran Eric Gleacher, said last year it was exploring strategic alternatives, including raising more capital or a sale.

"Although we did not believe any proposal we received during the process adequately reflected Gleacher's value, we will, as before, be opportunistic in considering value-building strategic initiatives," Chief Executive Thomas Hughes said in a statement.

Eric Gleacher, who founded the company in 1990, stepped down as its chairman last month. He created the mergers and acquisitions department at Lehman Brothers in 1978 and ran global M&A at Morgan Stanley from 1985 to 1990.

During his time at Morgan Stanley, he advised private equity giant Kohlberg Kravis Roberts in its famous takeover battle for RJR Nabisco and featured in the bestselling book on the deal, "Barbarians at the Gate".

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