Lewis S. Ranieri played a leading role in establishing the...

Lewis S. Ranieri played a leading role in establishing the market for mortgage-backed securities. Credit: Business Wire

A Uniondale startup founded by a Wall Street executive regarded as the "father" of the mortgage-backed securities market is raising funds to advance its blockchain technology.

In December, Ranieri Solutions LLC, founded by chief executive Lewis S. Ranieri, raised $500,000 in debt financing, the first part of a $1.2 million round, according to Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

It was unclear who provided the financing and the company did not respond to requests for comment.

Ranieri Solutions, which has raised a total of $9.5 million, according to Standard & Poor's Global Market Intelligence, is working with technology companies to create and apply blockchain technology in the real estate and mortgage markets.

Ranieri, onetime vice chairman of Wall Street investment bank Salomon Brothers, played a leading role in establishing the market for securities backed by a bundle of mortgages that were packaged into bonds by Wall Street firms. Mortgage-backed securities allow banks to sell their mortgage loans to financial institutions, which combine them into securities that can be sold to institutional investors.

Those securities played a leading role in the global financial crisis of 2007-2008 when lenders began aggressively marketing mortgages to borrowers with low credit scores. Those mortgages were packaged into securities that led to a subprime lending bubble.

Ranieri was one of the personalities depicted in the Michael Lewis book "Liar's Poker," about the author's days at Salomon Brothers in the 1980s, when the investment bank became known for a take-no-prisoners culture.

Ranieri exited Salomon Brothers in 1987 and a decade later, Salomon was acquired by Travelers Group, which merged with Citicorp the following year.

Ranieri also is listed as founding partner and chairman of Ranieri Partners, located at the same Uniondale address on Charles Lindbergh Boulevard as Ranieri Solutions. Ranieri Partners is a private company that invests in distressed commercial real estate and mortgages.

Blockchains are a type of ledger developed for cryptocurrency transactions. Blockchain transactions are recorded identically in multiple places, providing security. "Smart contracts" that will execute when certain conditions are met can be embedded in a blockchain. Such smart contracts theoretically could eliminate intermediaries, lowering the costs of transactions.

The price of risky assets, including cryptocurrencies, has fallen sharply in the past year, leading to a liquidity crisis and bankruptcy filings by some cryptocurrency companies, including Sam Bankman-Fried's FTX.

Mark Grabowski, who teaches cyber law at Adelphi University and is the author of "Cryptocurrencies: A Primer on Digital Money," said that while some could be wary of blockchain technology because of its connection to cryptocurrency, it could be useful in streamlining real estate transactions.

"It could cut out the middleman, processing fees and time," Grabowski said.

In December, a technology partner of Ranieri Solutions, Manhattan-based Symbiont.io Holdings Inc., made a Chapter 11 filing in U.S Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York. Symbiont's customers include Nasdaq and investment giant Vanguard.

Ref shortage... Katie Lee Biegel debuts new wine... What's up on LI Credit: Newsday

Home elevation program... Suffolk vehicle auction... Ref shortage... Katie Lee Biegel debuts new wine.

Ref shortage... Katie Lee Biegel debuts new wine... What's up on LI Credit: Newsday

Home elevation program... Suffolk vehicle auction... Ref shortage... Katie Lee Biegel debuts new wine.

Latest Videos

SUBSCRIBE

Unlimited Digital AccessOnly 25¢for 5 months

ACT NOWSALE ENDS SOON | CANCEL ANYTIME