Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Buzz: How Jamie Dimon Kept His Job

Q: What do Warren Buffett, Rupert Murdoch, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, former Treasury secretary Hank Paulson, venture capitalist Marc Andreessen, and Home Depot co-founder Ken Langone have in common? (Besides being rich white men, that is.)  A: All of them joined Jamie Dimon in battle as the JPMorgan Chase CEO fought to keep his job as the bank's board chairman.

From New York Magazine: "Corporate governance isn't usually a sexy topic….The threat of having Dimon taken down a peg — and potentially having him quit altogether in protest — was enough to send JPMorgan into a furious behind-the-scenes lobbying effort to keep the popular CEO in power.

"...The effort to keep Dimon looked more like a presidential campaign than a normal lobbying effort. Executives divided and conquered: Joe Evangelisti and Kristin Lemkau, two of JPMorgan's top spokespeople, contacted reporters and influential columnists and got messages of support placed in visible spots like Politico's "Morning Money" newsletter; William Daley, a former JPMorgan Chase executive and President Obama's former chief of staff, was tasked with reaching out to union leaders; Sarah Youngwood, the bank's investor relations head, and Marianna Lake, the bank's CFO, were dispatched to make nice with large shareholders and pension funds; and bank executives including Jimmy Lee, the bank's top deal-maker, called top corporate leaders to urge them to support Dimon in their public appearances….

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