By the time General Electric (GE) - Get Report decided to sell the finance business that Clarence Nunn heads, his two decades with the company had tailored his resume for a job JPMorgan Chase (JPM) - Get Report needed to fill: leading its southeastern U.S. expansion in mid-sized business lending.
Nunn, most recently head of GE Capital's franchise business, held a variety of senior leadership posts before CEO Jeffrey Immelt decide to shed most of GE's lending operations in a pivot to digital manufacturing. At Chase, he will be based in Charlotte, N.C., and oversee a region including Florida, Georgia, Tennessee and the Carolinas where the bank is expanding its middle-market lending into eight more cities this year.
The business, which caters to companies with revenue from $20 million to $500 million a year, is a significant one for Chase, which has added 30 service regions in the past seven years. In the same period, lending in areas targeted for expansion increased nearly six-fold to $10.7 billion.
Revenue in those markets has grown at an average 46% a year to $351 million since JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon acquired Washington Mutual during the 2008 financial crisis, and executives have a long-term target of $1 billion.
"We've made a huge amount of progress in a very short amount of time in these new markets," Chase commercial banking chief Doug Petno told investors earlier this year. "Building organically, banker-by-banker, client-by-client, loan-by-loan, we've essentially created a nice size bank from scratch."
Chase's middle-market share ranks among the top 10 in three cities in the Southeast, which "is an important market for Chase," John Simmons, head of middle-market banking and specialized industries for the company, said in a statement. Nunn's "expertise and experience will bring tremendous value to our business and his deep knowledge of the franchise industry makes him well suited to build upon our efforts."
Nunn, received a bachelor's degree in marketing from San Diego State University and a master's of business administration from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, begins work with JPMorgan in October.
"Going from a company with the brand and market recognition of GE and being able to join a firm such as JPMorgan, you're lucky if in the span of a career you get to work for one company that's viewed that way," he said in a telephone interview. "I feel very fortunate to be able to work for a second company that casts that big a shadow in the fin services industry."