Thursday, May 24, 2012 sets date for home loan unit sale

After months of delay, has set a date for the sale of its mortgage origination business to Discover Financial, the Charlotte company announced Thursday.

The deal, announced a year ago, is now set to close June 6. is the parent of LendingTree, a site that allows customers to get multiple offers on mortgage and other loans, and the company also owns a number of other lead generation businesses. The company launched its own mortgage originator, called the Home Loan Center, in 2002.

"We're thrilled to lock in a close date for our transition to a successful pure-play lead generation company," CEO Doug Lebda said in a statement. "Given the improvements we've seen in sales, technology and marketing, we couldn't be more excited about the future of"

Under the terms of the deal renegotiated in February, Discover will pay $42.9 million at closing and $10 million on the first anniversary. It was already scheduled to pay $3 million on March 7. posted a profit of $13.1 million in the first quarter of 2012 on the strength of the Home Loan Center, which is being buoyed by a wave of refinancing.