Kim Kubsch is an international matchmaker. That's the simplest way to describe the Scottsdale businesswoman and world traveler.
Kim Kubsch is an international matchmaker.
That's the simplest way to describe the Scottsdale businesswoman and world traveler.
Kubsch is using more than 20 years of experience in the business world to connect Valley and worldwide companies, as well as students and tourists, using her recently created Web site, www.globalarizona.com.
"I like to call myself a global strategist," Kubsch said. "A lot of Arizona companies are interested in getting established abroad and many foreign companies are looking and coming to Arizona."
Besides running the site, Kubsch also coordinates educational forums and workshops in the Valley aimed at individuals who are either arriving here or preparing to leave for foreign countries.
Kubsch said when she arrived in the Valley in 2005 she was looking for activities linking local and foreign business people.
"I didn't think Arizona had a global pulse and global personality but, after a while, I realized that we do indeed have global links, but they're fragmented, spread out and not connected," Kubsch said.
A native of Milwaukee, Kubsch began her business career in the early 1980s establishing large and small shopping malls throughout the United States.
By the mid-1990s, she decided to take her business skills to Asia, where the retail shopping markets were beginning to grow, especially in China, Indonesia, Thailand and Malaysia.
She started a branch of the New York-based International Council of Shopping Centers in Asia and coordinated the first ICSC conference in Hong Kong, which attracted ten countries. Later, she created educational conferences for students from both the United States and Asia.
Kubsch, who has traveled to 103 countries, many of them listed on her Web site, worked for several Asian investment groups.
She is vice president of the Arizona International Growth Group, a member of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council and serves on the Phoenix Committee on Foreign Relations.
"We currently have more than 100 foreign companies operating in Arizona," said Rod Miller, vice president of international economic development for the economic council. "The service her Web site provides is valuable and essential."
The Web site, although targeted mainly to business people, also provides information about cultural events in the Valley for students, educators, families and foreign tourists. One of its popular sites is a listing of foreign restaurants in the Valley.
"Our food and cuisine lists is much more extensive than the Yellow Pages," Kubsch quipped.
It also offers a calendar showing events of global interest, translator services, student exchange programs and data about currency exchanges, worldwide time, weather reports and basic travel information.
"My goal is to make people in the Valley and everywhere in Arizona more globally aware," said Kubsch, who said she occasionally takes a percentage of a referral fee for being the go-between for businesses.
"But my biggest gain are the friends I've met from all over the world and the sense of trust we have for each other," Kubsch said.