Michael Lee-Chin was born on January 3, 1951 in Port Antonio, Jamaica, he is a Canadian businessman.Lee-Chin was appointed to the Order of Ontario in 2017.

In 2016, Lee-Chin was appointed Chairman of the Government of the Economic Growth Council of Jamaica (EGC).

Lee-Chin has made several major Canadian pledges and/or gifts to the Royal Ontario Museum in 2003, the University of Toronto Rotman School of Management , McMaster University , and the Joseph Brant Hospital . Lee-Chin served as Chancellor of Wilfrid Laurier University .

Michael Lee-Chin Net Worth

The net worth has been growing significantly in 2021-2022.  Michael Lee-Chin’s source of income comes primarily from being a successful President. He is from Jamaica. We have estimated Michael Lee-Chin net worth, money, salary, income and assets.

Net worth in 20221.6 billion USD (2020).

Michael Lee-Chin Biography

Lee-Chin was born in Port Antonio, Jamaica , in 1951 to Aston Lee and Hyacinth Gloria Chen. Both of her parents were biracial African and Chinese Jamaican . When Lee-Chin was seven years old, his mother married Vincent Chen,  who had a son from a previous relationship, and the couple had seven more children together, six boys and one girl.Lee-Chin’s mother sold Avon products and worked as an accountant for various local businesses, while her stepfather ran a local grocery store.

He attended the local high school, Titchfield High , between 1962 and 1969.

 Michael Lee-Chin Career

In 1965, Lee-Chin’s first job came as a member of the landscaping team at Frenchman’s Cove Hotel. The following year, he got a summer job on the cruise ship Jamaica Queen , where he cleaned the engine room. 

In 1970, he went to Canada on a scholarship program sponsored by the Jamaican government to study civil engineering at McMaster University,and graduated in 1974. He funded his first year at university on his own but after that was able to attend on a scholarship. 

After graduating from McMaster, Lee-Chin worked briefly as a road engineer for the Jamaican government, but unable to find work in his skilled field (and allegedly, because his Canadian wife did not like living in Jamaica), he returned to Canada where he began graduate studies in commerce. At first he worked as a bouncer, but later found employment as a financial advisor for Investors Group.

Lee-Chin spent two years with Investors Group, in the Hamilton, Ontario office, and in 1979 he moved to Regal Capital Planners and became a regional manager. While working in the business, in 1983 he secured a CA$500,000 loan from Continental Bank of Canada to buy a stake in Mackenzie Financial Group and formed Kicks Athletics with Andrew Gayle. In 1987, the investment amounted to 3.5 million Canadian dollars. 

In 1987, Lee-Chin used the proceeds from his investment in Mackenzie to buy a Kitchener company called Advantage Investment Council (a division of AIC Limited) for $200,000. At the time, the company held assets of approximately C$800,000. He renamed the company AIC and grew it into a fund that today controls around C$6 billion, with hundreds of thousands of investors. Following the acquisition of AIC Limited, Lee-Chin established the Berkshire group of companies, consisting of an investment planning division, a securities brokerage and an insurance operation. By 2007, Berkshire had amassed over C$12 billion in assets under administration. 

In 2009, Lee-Chin sold AIC Limited to Manulife for an undisclosed amount. The following year, Manulife rebranded the AIC legacy funds and eliminated the AIC name from the mutual fund lineup. 

In addition to being the founder and chairman of Portland Holdings Inc., Mr. Lee-Chin is chairman and director of Mandeville Holdings Inc. and executive chairman, CEO and portfolio manager of Portland Investment Counsel Inc. 

Michael Lee-Chin Investments 1990-2005

At the end of the 1980s, AIC suffered from a collapse of the real estate market, in which it had invested. It recovered throughout the early 1990s by maintaining investments in large groups, such as Merrill Lynch and TD Bank (formerly Toronto Dominion). This increased investments from US$8 million in 1990 to almost US$8 billion in 1998.

Lee-Chin was reluctant to invest in the dotcom boom and saw AIC investments lose 8% in value, even as the S&P gained 56%. Investors withdrew US$224 million from AIC’s flagship mutual fund, ‘Advantage Mutual Fund’. The Globe and Mail haspublished an article predicting that even more investors would leave the fund, which would mean that it would run out of cash and be forced to sell its top holdings. Lee-Chin’s response was to sell shares of Coca-Cola and invest US$65 million in Mackenzie Holdings (the same company in which he had invested US$400,000 16 years earlier). 

Letters were sent to the 350,000 investors, explaining the strategy. Investors were calmed by the purchase, and the stock was then sold to Investor Group (the same company Lee-Chin had worked for in the 1980s) at more than double the price AIC had paid for it. In 2000 and 2001, following the dotcom crash, AIC outperformed the market with growth of 26 percent and decline of 4 percent respectively.

In November 2003, AIC participated in a regulatory investigation involving 105 Canadian mutual fund companies. In their review of AIC, investigators found no evidence of late trading activity and market timing by AIC staff. However, the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) found that during the period 1999-2003, AIC permitted certain third-party investors to engage in market timing trades in AIC funds that generated profits of $127 million.

In the settlement agreement between AIC and the OSC, the OSC stated that “accordingly, the conduct of.As a result, in December 2004, AIC Limited was forced to return C$58.8 million to affected investors, which was the largest penalty imposed on one of the fund companies under the OSC investigatio.

On October 5, 2006, Lee-Chin announced his resignation as CEO of AIC, to be replaced by Jonathan Wellum, AIC’s Chief Investment Officer.

In 2005, two investment product managers offering structured products joined the Portland Holdings portfolio. Copernican Capital Corporation has offered retail investment products, primarily sold through broker-dealers, and has raised over C$800 million in 10 closed-end funds since launch. Markland Street Asset Management, which launched the Oil Sands Sector Fund, raised C$430 million in one of Canada’s largest closed-end IPOs.


In 2003, he made headlines when he pledged to donate $30 million to the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), a third of which had been donated in 2015. He also made a $10 million gift to the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. The donation established the Michael Lee-Chin Family Institute for Corporate Citizenship at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management. The Lee-Chin Institute’s goal is to help current and future business leaders embed corporate citizenship into their business strategy and practices.

In September 2014, Lee-Chin and her family donated $10 million to the Joseph Brant Hospital Foundation.

Michael Lee-Chin and his family received the 2015 National Philanthropy Award from the Association of Fundraising Professionals (Golden Horseshoe Chapter) in the Outstanding Philanthropist category .

Investment In The Caribbean

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, Jamaica went through a period of financial crisis. Lee-Chin saw potential in his homeland and Portland purchased 75 percent of the National Commercial Bank of Jamaica for J$6 billion ($127 million) from the Jamaican government. In 2003, Senvia Money Services Inc., a global money transfer company, was established. This was followed in 2004, by the acquisition of AIC Financial Group Limited, headquartered in Trinidad.

In 2004, he announced his intention to create the AIC Caribbean Fund with the intention of investing throughout the Caribbean region. The stated objective of the fund is to raise US$1 billion to “make investments in companies located in the countries of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), with a focus on Jamaica, Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago”.  So far, he has made a number of large-scale investments.

In 2006, Portland acquired an 85% majority stake in United General Insurance Company, Jamaica’s largest auto insurer, and renamed the company Advantage General Insurance Company. A majority stake in CVM Communications Group (composed of radio and television stations and newspapers) was purchased at the same time.

Portland has partnered with the Canadian Risley Group to form Columbus Communications Ltd – a Barbadian company which owns a majority stake in a number of telecommunications providers in the Caribbean including Cable Bahamas Ltd, Caribbean Crossings Ltd, Merit Communications Ltd and FibralLink Jamaica ltd.

In the tourism sector, Lee-Chin has guided Portland through a number of acquisitions in the Caribbean. Among them were the hospitality operations of Trident Villas and Spa in Jamaica, Reggae Beach and Blue Lagoon.

Portland’s first healthcare acquisition was announced in July 2006, when Medical Associates Ltd., a private hospital in Kingston, Jamaica, joined the Portland Group.

Commodity Boom

Similar to the experience of the late 90s, Lee-Chin again avoided investing in commodities and the energy market boom. He specifically stated that “We [AIC] don’t like commodity-type companies or most high-tech companies simply because they’re implicitly poor companies that we wouldn’t want to keep for the long term. “. 

Again, this strategy meant that the AIC significantly underperformed the S&P index, but Lee-Chin said in 2006 that he believed the current boom was just another bubble. Lee-Chin describes the market since 1990 as “a series of continuous speculation”, and now “we see a commodity bubble”. 

Business Strategy

At Investors Group, he studied the strategies of successful investors, such as Warren Buffett, Benjamin Graham, and Kenneth Thomson. Their buy and hold strategy is easily recognizable in the AIC’s motto – Buy, Hold and Thrive . He has also invested in public investment management companies that benefit from a bull market in two ways. In a rising market, the shares of the portfolios increase and more and more people become investors and increase the existing investments.

Michael Lee-Chin Private Life

In 1974 he married Vera Lee-Chin, a Ukrainian woman he had met in college. They separated in 1991 and officially separated (but did not divorce) in 1997. Ms Lee-Chin has since challenged the terms of the separation agreement, claiming Lee-Chin did not disclose her wealth actual at the time of separation. The couple had three children, Michael Jr., Paul and Adrian.

Lee-Chin now lives with Sonya Hamilton, with whom he has fraternal twin daughters, Elizabeth and Maria, in Burlington, Ontario.

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