The JPMorgan Chase vice chairman was a force behind some of the media industry’s biggest deals. Usually referred to as “Jimmy,” James Lee was NBCUniversal’s lead banker when GE sold it to Comcast, advised News Corp during its purchase of Dow Jones, and helped to manage IPOs for Facebook and Twitter. He also advised Comcast for its aborted plan this year to buy Time Warner Cable.
JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon called Lee “a great friend, leader and mentor to me and so many others. As Vice Chairman of our company and former head of our Investment Bank, Jimmy made an indelible and invaluable contribution to our firm, our people, our clients and our industry over his nearly 40 years of dedicated and selfless service. Jimmy was a master of his craft, but he was so much more — he was an incomparable force of nature.”
Lee made his name at Chemical Bank after 1982, when he started its syndicated leverage finance group. In 1994 he took it into high yield lending. Manufacturers Hanover bought Chemical and he led the bank up to 2001 when it merged with J.P. Morgan.