News Release
For Immediate Release
April 8, 2016

Michael Sullivan, GOED Communications Director

Paypal VP to Share Strategic Sales Insights at Utah Economic Summit
Robert Clarkson is one of many big name experts headlining this year’s summit

SALT LAKE CITY, UT—Professional sales people know the science of selling, but as the deals they work become larger and more complex, the arts of listening and relationship building become more critical. Financial services industry veteran Robert Clarkson of PayPal will share his art at the Utah Economic Summit April 15.

“As the opportunities you work grow from a million dollars to ten million to 100 million, the nature of the sale changes,” Clarkson said. “You spend less time selling the paint, and more time selling the painting. Your organization and the client build a vision together that leads to a long-term, mutually beneficial relationship.”

Clarkson is one of dozens of thought leaders and innovators presenting at the summit, which will include 14 breakout sessions with topics ranging from emerging technology and human resource strategies to adapting business models and small business development.

Clarkson has played a key role in identifying new markets and creating innovative products and solutions for the payment industry’s top companies for nearly 25 years. As PayPal’s Vice President & General Manager of North America Merchant & Retail Solutions and Global Business Development, Clarkson oversees the acquisition, maintenance, integration and ongoing marketing support for Large Enterprise Merchants.  He is also responsible for PayPal’s global digital gift card business representing more than 100 of the top retail brands.

Robert joined PayPal from American Express, where, as vice president of global business development, he guided AmEx’s efforts to define new growth strategies and strengthen the company’s B2B business. Before American Express, he served as president of global business development for the Salt Lake City-based GE Corporate Payment Services. There he built the sales and account service organization and led a business unit that generated more than $11 billion in payment volume. His career in the payments industry stretches back to 1990, when he first joined Citigroup.

“It’s great to have successful industry leaders like Robert Clarkson come back to Utah to join us for the Summit,” said Val Hale, executive director of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED), a prime sponsor of the Utah Economic Summit. “Mr. Clarkson has driven innovation in financial services throughout his career and can share ways Utah’s sales professionals can thrive in an ever-changing marketplace. No matter your trade, the key to success is innovation.”

The 10th Annual Utah Economic Summit will be hosted by Gov. Gary R. Herbert and presented by Zions Bank and GOED. This year’s theme, Innovate Utah! will celebrate and advance innovation across every Utah industry. Business and community leaders, as well as government officials, students, and educators are all encouraged to attend.

Represented companies and groups include Tesla Motors, UBS Bank, Jabil, Goldman Sachs, National Venture Capital Association, MaritzCX, Domo, Instructure, Deloitte, Ballard Spahr, Salt Lake Community College, Utah Valley University, chAIR Entertainment, and many other local companies. The event will be held April 15 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Grand America Hotel in Salt Lake City.

Register today at


About the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED)  

The Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) charter is based on Governor Gary Herbert’s commitment to economic development statewide. Utah’s economic development vision is that Utah will lead the nation as the best performing economy and be recognized as a premier global business environment and tourist destination. The mandate for this office is to provide rich business resources for the creation, growth and recruitment of companies to Utah and to increase tourism and film production in the state. GOED accomplishes this mission through the administration of programs that are based around targeted industries or “economic clusters” that demonstrate the best potential for development. GOED utilizes state resources and private sector contracts to fulfill its mission.  For more information please contact:  Michael Sullivan, 801-538-8811 or