Matt Zames JPMorgan Chase’s CIO retires from the bank

Zames was the leading contender for replacing Jamie Dimon,61, at the helm of the bank.

On Thursday, JPMorgan Chase & Co disclosed Matt Zames, its Chief Operating Officer who was once seen as a successor to Jamie Dimon, its CEO, will be leaving the bank in the coming weeks. His duties are now being distributed among other senior executives said the bank.

In an internal memo, Dimon thanked Zames for his 13 years of service but did not state why he was leaving the bank.

As per a source familiar with the matter at hand, Zames wanted to run his own company.

Zames did not return a call seeking comment.

His exit has once again stirred up one of Wall Street’s parior games – who will succeed Dimon, 61.

Zames, 46, was the youngest of the six contenders and had the advantage of knowing all segments of the bank, including real estate, cyber security, and technology.

Zames had played a central role in stabilizing the bank during the 2007-2009 financial crisis. He was also instrumental after the “London Whale” scandal in 2012.

“While I am sad to see him leave, I respect his decision and all he has done for JPMorgan Chase,” said Dimon.

In the internal memo, Dimon has detailed a new organizational structure in which Zames responsibilities have been distributed among the remaining five potential successors:

– Daniel Pinto, CEO of Corporate and Investment Bank and CFO of  Marianne Lake

– Gordon Smith, CEO of Consumer and Community Banking

– Mary Erdoes, CEO of Asset Management

– Doug Petno, CEO of Commercial Bank.

With Dimon showing no inclination for relinquishing his post, a whole lot of potential successors have left the bank in recent years, with many being absorbed in other leading institutions, including Barclays PLC, Standard Chartered PLC and Visa Inc.

As per Michael Mattioli, a portfolio manager at Manulife Asset Management, JPMorgan still has a lot of highly capable leaders.

“They’ve built up such a high quality bench that a lot of these senior executives are going to be attractive to other companies,” said Mattioli.

Zames is set to receive discretionary payments of $4.625 million on February 1, 2018 followed by $4.5 million in February 1, 2019. As part of his pay package, he has agreed to not compete with JPMorgan until Feb. 1, 2018, as well as not to solicit clients upto February 1, 2019. He will also not be able to hire employees of the bank before February 1, 2020.

“Jamie has been a true mentor to me, and it has been a privilege to be a member of his team. I’m confident I will continue to benefit from his guidance and wisdom in the future,” said Zames in the memo.

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Categories: Creativity, Entrepreneurship, HR & Organization, Strategy

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