James Sassoon began his career at KPMG, before joining SG Warburg (later UBS Warburg) in 1985, where he became a managing director and head of the investment bank’s industry sector teams, equity corporate finance and global privatization business.
Lord Sassoon joined the Treasury Board in 2002 as a civil servant, where he had responsibility for financial services and enterprise policy. Between 2007 and 2010, he chaired the Financial Action Task Force and, acting as an adviser to the then Shadow Chancellor, he conducted The Tripartite Review of the United Kingdom’s system of financial regulation. From May 2010 to January 2013, he was the first Commercial Secretary to the Treasury in the United Kingdom, and he acted as the Government’s Front Bench Treasury spokesman in the House of Lords.
During his banking and government career, he had a consistent focus on international business, particularly relating to Asia. From 2013 to 2020 he was an Executive Director of Jardine Matheson, the Hong Kong based Asian trading group. He is President (formerly Chairman) of the China-Britain Business Council and he acts as an advisor to the Chinese sovereign wealth fund, the CIC, and to Japan’s largest bank, MUFG.
Lord Sassoon was knighted in 2007 and joined the House of Lords in 2010. He is a Trustee of the British Museum.
He was born in London in 1955 and educated at Eton College and Christ Church, Oxford, where he read Philosophy, Politics and Economics. He is married with three children.