In a move that could bring the digital closing experience to a large number of new consumers, Notarize announced Thursday that it has teamed up with real estate tech giant Ellie Mae.

Pat Kinsel

The new partnership will let lenders who are using Ellie Mae’s Encompass software to “just turn on” Notarize, the latter company’s founder and CEO Pat Kinsel told Inman. As a result, Kinsel said he expects Notarize to see significant growth.

“We expect to see exponential growth just from our existing customers,” he said. “It just totally changes for us how we get in front of customers.”

Encompass is a software platform that lets lenders digitize the process of creating loans. Ellie Mae says that the software “delivers a true digital mortgage experience across the entire loan origination workflow.”

Private equity firm Thoma Bravo acquired Ellie Mae earlier this year. However, when it was still a public company in 2017, Ellie Mae revealed in a yearly report that 184,000 mortgage professionals were using Encompass.

Kinsel described Encompass as a dominant platform in the lending industry, but said that it still required consumers to physically sign paperwork in order to close a real estate transaction. The last step, in other words, wasn’t yet digital.

The new partnership with Notarize — which among other things launched fully automated closings in 2017 — aims to change that. Now, Kinsel explained, existing users of Encompass can integrate Notarize’s software into the systems they already use.

“We fit right into that current workflow that they’re familiar with,” he added. “This is the key moment so that lenders across the country can really adopt digital closings.”

The new partnership comes at the tail end of a banner year for Notarize. In May, the company announced that it had facilitated more than $1 billion in online closings since 2017. Then in June, it teamed up with Fidelity National Financial, and launched “hybrid” closings that combined both digital and in-person features. And just last month, Notarize teamed up with mortgage lender Guaranteed Rate.

Parvesh Sahi

It is perhaps no surprise then that Ellie Mae was excited to work with Notarize. In a statement Thursday, Ellie Mae senior vice president Parvesh Sahi said the partnership should save time and reduce friction in the loan origination process.

“We are thrilled to partner with Notarize to provide added value to Ellie Mae customers,” Parvesh Sahi, senior vice president at Ellie Mae, said in a statement. “Through this integration, our customers will be able to automate key workflow to determine online closing eligibility.”

Email Jim Dalrymple II

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