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Employees Call Out Locker-Room Culture at Phoenix Suns Owner’s Company

Mat Ishbia built one of the largest mortgage-origination firms in the US. Some current and former employees say they encountered racial disparities, sexism and bullying there.

Mat Ishbia during a Suns game in Phoenix, Arizona. 

Mat Ishbia during a Suns game in Phoenix, Arizona. 

Photographer: Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Mat Ishbia, the billionaire who bought professional basketball’s Phoenix Suns in February, runs a mortgage company where former and current employees complain of racial disparities, sexual harassment and bullying by managers.

More than two dozen people who have worked at Ishbia’s United Wholesale Mortgage in recent years described a high-pressure locker-room environment at the company’s Pontiac, Michigan, offices. Several said some underwriting managers treated Black workers differently from White employees. Others said leering and sexually offensive remarks were common among sales staff. Most asked not to be named citing fear of reprisals.