Briefing with AmCham Korea Chairman and CEO – April 23

Each week, we hear from an AmCham leader in another country around the region. On Thursday afternoon, we turn our focus to South Korea for an on-the-ground view of how the US business community is handling the crisis from AmCham Korea Chairman and CEO James Kim.

Over the weekend, cafes bustled with customers, parks teemed with sunbathers, and the first Apple store to reopen outside China had lines snaking out the door as many South Koreans emerged from months of self-isolation. The scene in Seoul contrasted sharply with other nations where major cities look like ghost towns as governments lock down huge swaths of the population or impose strict restrictions on social gatherings.

Economic concerns are clearly still there, and the impact can already be seen as signs at some shuttered shops show they were up for rent, and business owners point to a lack of traffic and consumption. But the country’s success in curtailing the outbreak through a massive testing and contact-tracing campaign might be the model other countries follow.

James will tell us what life is like for US companies as economic activity heats up and the government drafts guidelines for a return to a “new normal,” including modifying quarantine procedures and social distancing measures.

About the guest speaker:

James Kim is Chairman and CEO of AmCham Korea. He previously served as Chairman, CEO and President of GM Korea and was responsible for the operations of 17,000 employees. Mr. Kim is a Korean-American who is passionate about promoting the commercial interests between the United States ​and Korea. Mr. Kim joined GM Korea from Microsoft Korea, where he had served as Country Manager and CEO. His previous roles include CEO of Yahoo! Korea and Asia Regional Vice President of Overture (a wholly owned subsidiary of Yahoo). Prior to Yahoo, Mr. Kim worked predominantly in the United States, where he was the Managing Partner at Palisades Advisors and held other positions including CEO at, CEO of Vivien International and National Marketing Manager at AT&T.

Mr. Kim holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of California, Los Angeles and a Master of Business Administration from Harvard University. As an avid tennis player, Mr. Kim serves as an official “Wilson Brand Ambassador.” Mr. Kim lives in Seoul, Korea with his spouse and has two grown children.

This virtual meeting will use the Microsoft Teams platform. Please register your participation by clicking on the button below or by calling (84) 24 3934 2790. Registered participants will receive an email on Wednesday afternoon with the URL link and instructions.