While reading an article about the computerization of passenger manifests for ships docked at Ellis Island, Virendra Nath and Nancy Makowski had an insight – that all human knowledge would eventually be computerized, perhaps during their lifetimes, and that entrepreneurs would find creative ways to monetize the information. Converting the data was expensive and ways would have to be found to reduce the cost of data conversion.
This perception resulted in the formation of HDEP International in 1983 in Honolulu, Hawaii. The company was formed to undertake bulk data entry of historical documents at about half the cost of doing the work locally. HDEP International proposed to establish a facility in the Philippines to leverage the lower labor costs in Manila.
By 1988 the company had established itself as a reputable data conversion firm and began to win contracts from government and large public record data warehouses. A contract with Orange County, CA led to a contract with a title company in South Dakota and thence to a contract with TRW (the forerunner of Datatrace). All the contracts were impeccably executed and the company became the leader in building title backplants, maintaining day forward plants. By 2002, the company was converting title data for over 100,000 documents per day.
The title insurance industry requires a high degree of accuracy and reliability in its underlying databases because errors in the databases result in liability claims. Having discovered the competence and reliability of HDEP’s operations, the title insurance industry made HDEP the de-facto standard for outsourcing. Customers requested HDEP to build up its capability in title production.
In the thirty years since its founding in Honolulu, Hawaii, HDEP International continues to serve the title insurance industry for title plant construction and maintenance, and title production and escrow support. The company continues to be privately held by Virendra Nath and Nancy Makowski, and maintains its headquarters in Hawaii. The company’s production facilities are located in Manila, Philippines and New Delhi, India.