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Thomas Lee’s Firm Is Thrust Into Spotlight After Founder’s Death

  • Executives have held talks to reassure clients, employees
  • The firm had previously maintained a low public profile
Thomas Lee at his office in New York in 2019. 
Thomas Lee at his office in New York in 2019. Photographer: Christopher Goodney/Bloomberg

Thomas H. Lee’s second, smaller private investment firm — long known for making quiet bets — has now been thrust into the public glare after its founder’s death was ruled a suicide.

Lee, who was 78, founded Lee Equity Partners in 2006 in a bid to relaunch his career after making his name as a buyout pioneer, and he continued to serve as chairman. He died Thursday at his separate family office in Manhattan, a block away from the private equity firm, in what city officials said was a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.