JPMorgan Chase (JPM) has named John Simmons, 43, its head of middle-market commercial banking.

He'll take over from Steve Walker, 64, when Walker retires at yearend.

Starting in April, Simmons and Walker will jointly manage JPMorgan's middle-market unit, which serves companies with annual revenues of $20 million to $500 million. It has 1,600 employees and serves more than 19,000 businesses.

Simmons has been the co-head of JPMorgan's North American financial institutions group. He has more than 20 years of experience advising companies on raising capital, mergers and acquisitions, secured and unsecured financing and risk management.

"John's expertise and client relationships will bring tremendous value to our business," Doug Petno, JPMorgan's commercial banking chief, said in a news release. "Throughout his career, he has worked with clients across many industries, which prepares him well for the diverse nature of our middle-market banking clients."

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