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NEW YORK CITY-Title insurance companies, Kensington National Land Services and Vanguard Title Agency have merged to create Kensington Vanguard National Land Services LLC. The 70-person firm is headquartered in Midtown Manhattan at 39 W. 37th St., a spokeswoman confirms to GlobeSt.com.

“At a time when many in our industry are cutting back, we feel now is the time to combine resources and invest in the creation and growth of KV National Land, a superior platform to support an ever-expanding roster of the most prestigious local and national clients,” says Jarett Fein, co-CEO and principal of Kensington Vanguard National Land Services. Fein tells GlobeSt.com that the firm’s main attraction towards each other is that they are two very aggressive companies, and are both similar in size, but with many different strategies. “Vanguard focused on the New York commercial and high-end residential, where as Kensington had a vast national platform that was able to service high-volume residential business in every state in addition to also New York commercial and residential,” he says. “It was the perfect complement to put the two together to build a uniquely-diversified, perfectly-balanced company that could handle any type of transaction, for any type of client, anywhere in the country.”

Fein tells GlobeSt.com that there were no other firms being looked at for this merger, however the firm is “continuing to aggressively pursue strategic acquisitions such as sales teams, personnel and additional council.” When asked how the merger better helps them to compete, he tells GlobeSt.com that “we can better service our clients, which is always a top priority. We have the best personnel in town and we are continuing to grow our staff which includes some of the most renowned names and counsel in the business.” He explains that 50-year veteran title underwriting counsel Joseph Friedman, for example, is considered the dean of title insurance. Friedman will serve as senior EVP and chief underwriting counsel for the new firm.

Both Fein and Brian Cooper, co-CEO and principal of the new entity, emphasized that their greatest strength comes from the team of professionals that make up KV National Land’s legal and underwriting departments. In addition to personnel, Fein says, “we can handle transactions across the country with our national platform. We can now do all the work internally in order to get a transaction closed…this is something that will benefit our large national commercial clients and our high-volume national lenders who can now rely on one stop shopping to handle their deals.”

In addition, he explains, “as a company double the size, we can cover a lot more territory in an effort to acquire more market share…though times are somewhat challenging right now to say the least, we are building for the future.”

Prior to the merger, Vanguard underwrote several billion dollars worth of insured transactions annually. The firm was involved in such transactions as the sales of 5 Times Square and 650 Madison Ave. among many others. Kensington has also been involved in large commercial transactions such as the acquisitions of the Helmsley Building and 1440 Broadway. KV National Land offers a full suite of national title, settlement, escrow and 1031 Exchange services for transactions across all real estate asset categories, from office buildings, hotels and development projects, to individual homes, condominiums and new construction, according to a prepared statement.

“Our clients have come to expect more from us,” Cooper says, in a prepared statement. “Because our legal and underwriting departments have such an intricate and in-depth understanding of the more complex and technical aspects of the business, we bring a consultative approach to every transaction in order to avoid the possibility of pitfalls and legal issues that may not be apparent from the initial evaluation of the title work.”

Cooper adds that KV National Land will also continue to be known for the efficiency, service and attention to detail with which it produces its work product and responds to client needs no matter the size or scope of the transaction.

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