How Anthony Hsieh went from liquor store cashier to mortgage industry billionaire

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One night in 1979, Anthony Hsieh, 14, was working in his family’s liquor store in Long Beach, California, when a masked gunman walked into the store… pointed a gun at his head and shot him. asked to empty the cash register. His young life passed before his eyes. He survived unscathed. Turning a tragedy into a triumph, the experience gave Anthony the perspective he needed later in life to found a rambling and upstart mortgage company and make it the second largest of its kind in the country. His experience in the heist also gave Hsieh the strength to face the discrimination and hostility he later encountered as an Asian American trying to start a business in the financial industry. . Oh, and by the way, that wasn’t the only time he was held up in the family store. He suffered two other armed robberies in the family store.

Anthony Hsieh is the founder of LoanDepot Inc. The company went public on the New York Stock Exchange earlier this year. Public offering made Anthony Hsieh one of the few Asian-American multi-billionaires in the United States

This is his story …

Mark Brown / Getty Images

Youth

Anthony Hsieh was born in Taiwan. Her family immigrated to California in the early 1970s. Her parents gave up a comfortable life in Taiwan so that their children could grow up in the United States.

Hsieh’s father worked as a grill cook while he saved money to open his own store. Her parents didn’t speak English, so from the age of 8, Hsieh helped negotiate all of the family’s major financial decisions – from buying appliances and cars to taking out a mortgage on their first. home in America. Anthony credits that education for giving him the determination he needed to take on the biggest banks on Wall Street and enter one of the toughest areas of the financial industry.

Hsieh’s parents hoped their son would become a doctor. Just a small problem: Anthony was afraid of blood. His parents came up with what they thought was a reasonable compromise: he could become a dentist instead.

Hsieh didn’t want to do that either.

Anthony eventually enrolled at California State University, Fullerton, where he played on the baseball team. A day after training, a teammate’s dad told Anthony he needed to get into the mortgage business. It was that simple and that’s what Anthony did. He applied for a job as a loan officer with a small mortgage lender. He was offered the job on the spot.

Direct Loans

Four years later, Anthony realized that the small business had more potential than his bosses could see. In 1989, he proposed to buy the company Ils accept. Anthony removed obsolete typewriter and fax technology, installed the latest computers, created a website, and renamed the company LoansDirect.

In its early days, LoansDirect was a very typical physical loan originator. People trying to buy a home would go to one of the company’s physical offices and apply for a loan.

In the mid-1990s, Anthony saw how the booming World Wide Web could revolutionize the lending industry. The all new LoansDirect.com quickly became one of the first mortgage companies to accept applications over the Internet.

In 2001 – JUST BEFORE DOTCOM BUBBLE BURST – Anthony sold LoansDirect.com to E-Trade for $ 35 million. That’s the equivalent of just over $ 50 million today.

Thanks to his financial windfall, Anthony spent the next year developing a passion for marlin fishing. Fun fact: Decades later, another Anthony Hsieh company – LoanDepot – bought the stadium naming rights from a major league baseball team. The team? The Miami Marlins.

HomeLoan Center

After taking a year off to catch the marlin, Anthony returned to the mortgage business. In 2002, he founded HomeLoanCenter.com, the first online platform that offered a full range of mortgage options in all 50 states.

Anthony sold this company to LendingTree in 2004. Terms were not disclosed.

Loan deposit

LoanDepot is Anthony Hsieh’s latest startup (and the company that has the right to name the Miami Marlin Stadium).

Unlike its previous businesses which primarily paired buyers with lenders, LoanDepot is actually the lender, offering a variety of mortgage options directly to clients.

Today, LoanDepot is one of the largest non-bank consumer lenders in the United States. Since its inception in 2010, LoanDepot has funded over $ 250 billion in consumer loans.

In 2020, LoanDepot generated $ 4.3 billion in revenue. Hsieh believes his business will continue to grow as Millennials and Gen Zs, who are quite comfortable doing business online, seek out mortgages for their homes.

In February 2021, LoanDepot went public, raising $ 62 million in cash in the process. Today the company has a market capitalization of $ 4 billion.

Anthony owns 200 million shares of LoanDepot which is currently trading at around $ 13 per share. His actions are worth approximately …

$ 2.6 billion

This does not include any of the wealth previously generated by Anthony from past businesses.

The good life

In 2014, Anthony paid $ 16 million for a mansion in a gated community in Newport Beach, California. He still owns this house.

In October 2020, Anthony Hsieh paid $ 61 million for a SECOND mansion in Newport Beach, California. This purchase is currently the most expensive home ever purchased in Orange County, California. I wonder if he got a mortgage ?? 🙂

The property is in a gated community with a 19,000 square foot home on just under an acre. The entire back of the house has ocean views. The property also has an independent guest house, a gym, a home cinema, a large terrace and a patio overlooking the ocean. The monthly HOA fee is $ 2,500.

Hsieh still enjoys sport fishing. He owns and is the captain of Team Bad Company, a team of seven sport fishermen who travel the world to compete in the biggest fishing competitions. Team Bad Company is one of the most successful fishing teams in the world and has won over $ 6 million in cash prizes. Hsieh caught blue and black marlins weighing over 900 pounds.

Not bad for a former immigrant liquor store cashier!



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