RealTime IT News

LendingTree Extends Another Twig

Online loan play LendingTree Inc. is expanding its relationship with MSN, powering additional loan products on the CNBC on MSN Money Banking Center.

The news comes only a few days after the Charlotte, N.C.-based lending exchange posted a narrower fourth-quarter net loss of $4.5 million, or 29 cents per diluted share, compared with a year-earlier net loss of $14.9 million, or 75 cents per share. Revenue for the quarter almost doubled to $18.8 million from $9.6 million a year ago.

The deal (financial terms were not disclosed) with Microsoft's MSN portal means that visitors to the CNBC/MSN banking center can receive competing loan offers for mortgages, refinance, and home equity loans through LendingTree's exchange, in which more than 140 banks compete for business.

The agreement expands an existing relationship whereby LendingTree powers the auto loan and credit card products for CNBC on MSN Money.

"CNBC on MSN Money has established itself as a comprehensive personal finance site and LendingTree is pleased to align our No. 1 brand with theirs..." said Tom Reddin, president and chief operating officer of LendingTree.

Last month Lending Tree signed contracts with five lenders to integrate its Lend-X Automatic Decision Engine into their loan processing software. The companies include SIB Mortgage, Metro Lending, Millennium Bank and Pacific Guarantee Mortgage.

MSN is busy making other deals, too. Just yesterday pay-for-performance search engine Overture said the Microsoft Network is continuing to use its service for Web searches through 2003.