Unity through Diversity

Mixis Living Trailblazers

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MICHAEL LEE CHIN was born in Port Antonio, Jamaica in 1951 to Black and Chinese parents. His early years were spent doing menial jobs until he took the opportunity, on a grant from the Jamaican government, to go to Canada on a sponsorship program to study engineering at McMaster University. Returning to Jamaica upon finishing, he was unable to find work in his field so he returned to Canada to work and eventually found himself as a financial advisor. After “moving up” the chain in a few other companies he secured finances to start his own company with a partner, and brought his investments from a few thousand to a few million. He used his earnings to buy AIC and developed it into a billion dollar company. He started up another group of holdings and again built it into a 12 billion dollar investment firm with hundreds of thousands of investors.

After leaving his initial holdings he found renewed interest in Jamaica and purchased the National Bank while Jamaica was going through a financial crisis. He didn’t stop there but began to invest in the Caribbean, developing businesses in Jamaica, Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago. Today, his companies have holdings in sectors that include media, tourism, health care telecommunications and financial services. One of the richest men in Canada, his assets is worth about 1 billion dollars. He was instrumental in donating 30 million to the Royal Ontario Museum and a further 10 million to the Rotman School of Management. The Lee-Chin Institute's purpose is to help current and future business leaders integrate corporate citizenship into business strategy and practices.