WINNER / SERVICES
Former Pittsburgh Steelers running back Charles Sanders launched his mortgage service company, initially called Urban Settlement Services, out of the basement of his home in 2002.
Ten years later, thanks to Sanders’ entrepreneurial drive and his ability to recognize and react to changing market conditions, Urban Lending Solutions has ballooned to employ more than 800 people. It is ranked as the nation’s 28th-largest black-owned business and Black Enterprise magazine’s top-ranked growth company for 2010, a year during which the company posted a 231 percent jump in revenue.
Sanders, founder and CEO, formed the company to cultivate an opportunity he saw to take a number of “back room” lending operations such as title search and appraisal and to package them, ultimately offering a service to larger ﬁnancial institutions. He led the company with dedication and teamwork and built a reputation by providing title and loan origination services for people buying homes and produced some of the fastest turnaround times in the industry.
With the onslaught of the mortgage crisis in 2008, Sanders saw an opportunity to help more people, so he risked a shift in focus and retooled the company’s resources to serve the home-retention market. As the housing market fell, he transformed the company’s services to partner with ﬁnancial institutions to provide homeowners with options to save their homes. Sanders’ vision, leadership and delivery of services have since helped more than a million families retain their homes.
The growth and success of the company over the last ﬁve years is a result of Sanders’ ability to recognize emerging markets and areas where people need assistance and to successfully marry those needs to the company’s solution management capabilities. ■
HOW TO REACH: Urban Lending Solutions, www.urban-ls.com