Victor Ciardelli III, president and CEO, Guaranteed Rate Inc.

Victor Ciardelli III, president and CEO, Guaranteed Rate Inc.

WINNER: Financial Services

Victor Ciardelli III founded Guaranteed Rate Inc. in 2000 based on the concept of providing customers with low mortgage rates and a transparent, streamlined residential mortgage process. Ciardelli’s disciplined management of the company has enabled Guaranteed Rate to become one of the most successful residential mortgage lenders in the country despite significant volatility in the mortgage business over the last few years.

Guaranteed Rate has increased its loan volume and revenue every year since its inception. Based in Chicago, the company has more than 1,500 employees and 115 offices nationwide. Guaranteed Rate uses best practices from multiple industries and continually invests in technology, recruiting and training. Customer surveys have consistently shown 97 percent-plus month-to-month satisfaction scores, resulting in many client referrals.

The company has maintained a conservative approach to mortgage lending and capital preservation and its mortgages have demonstrated credit quality and loan performance well above national averages.

Under Ciardelli’s leadership, Guaranteed Rate has focused on four areas to increase its market share and help reach its long-term strategic goals: recruiting the best loan originators and operations professionals in the country, merging its entire mortgage operations into its loan origination platform, developing relationships with realty agents, and creating and developing an Internet-based lending platform.

Guaranteed Rate began funding loans via its Internetbased platform in the first quarter of 2012 and the company’s leaders are optimistic that the online service could account for half of its revenue in the next two to four years.

Ciardelli plans to continue building on Guaranteed Rate’s strengths and aggressively grow the company nationally, with the goal of becoming the largest and most respected residential mortgage lender in the country. ■

HOW TO REACH: Guaranteed Rate Inc.,