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Stonegate Mortgage president gets keys to CEO's office

April 18, 2016

Stonegate Mortgage Corp. has promoted its president and chief operating officer to the CEO’s seat that was vacated last year in an abrupt resignation by its founder.

Stonegate’s board announced Monday that James V. Smith, 58, would become president and CEO, effective immediately. Interim CEO Richard A. Kraemer will remain as chairman.

Kraemer became temporary chief executive of the Indianapolis-based firm in September after Jim Cutillo, founder and CEO, announced that he planned to resign. At the time, Cutillo said he wanted to redirect his entrepreneurial energy into a new venture.

Analysts at FBR Capital Markets noted that Stonegate had “disappointed investor expectations broadly, and a change was needed for a restoration of confidence.”

Also in September, Stonegate hired Smith, a mortgage industry veteran whose resume included stints as director of U.S. mortgage operations for technology consulting firm Wipro Ltd. and senior vice president for Bank of America Corp.

As president and COO for Stonegate, Smith oversaw all of the company’s operations.

“Stonegate Mortgage is an exceptional organization with a great future and I am extremely excited to serve as its chief executive officer,” Smith said in a press release. “I am very confident we can build on the strong foundation our team has put into place to drive our continued success as a leading mortgage company.”

Smith’s base salary as president and CEO will be $440,000, according to an SEC filing. He also will be eligible for annual performance bonuses, as determined by the board.

Stonegate originates, finances and services mortgage loans. Cutillo founded the company with his wife, Barb Cutillo, in 2005 and took the firm public in October 2013 at around $18 share.

Stonegate shares were up 1 percent, to $5.75, in early trading Monday.
 

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