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Simpleview Thrives from Oro Valley Location

By Dave Perry

With 1,000 clients around the world using its unique tools, Oro Valley-based Simpleview considers itself the world leader in providing integrated technology solutions to destination marketing organizations.

“Undisputed,” CEO Ryan George says. He doesn’t think he’s bragging. George makes that claim because his company’s technology has helped revolutionize an industry for two decades. Simpleview’s 425 employees, 160 of whom live in greater Tucson, take exceptional care of clients from Malaysia to Panama, and beyond.

This global business – think Visit Tucson as a prototypical customer − could be anywhere. George has been to most of those places.

“I flew 275,000 miles last year,” he said from his Oracle Road office where Pusch Ridge is so close you could almost touch it. “Every place has its good qualities and its drawbacks.”

He is quick to say, “There’s no place I’d rather be than here in Oro Valley.”

OV Roots Span Generations

Ryan George grew up near Hardy Road in Oro Valley, when there was “nothing north of the CDO wash. It was the boondocks out here back then.”

His father, the late Michael George, was in Canyon del Oro High School’s first graduating class, in 1968. Ryan graduated from CDO in 1993. He and his wife, Kim Evans, are raising their three children in Oro Valley. Two are students at CDO, and a third attends Cross Middle School.

Oro Valley was “a phenomenal place to grow up, a great place to start and have a career, and an awesome place to raise our family,” he said. “It’s close to our roots, it’s close to our families.” And its proximity to the University of Arizona, Tucson, and the great outdoors make Oro Valley “a good place for the business,” George adds.

“People have a perception of Tucson and Oro Valley that doesn’t match what they experience once they’re here. We have a place where people can live, work and play.”

‘Reeling’ from COVID

“The pandemic sent everybody reeling,” George said. COVID-19’s impact was a double whammy for Simpleview, which is fundamentally a travel and technology company.

Travel halted. Employees worked at home. Forced remote and subsequent hybrid work made the world “one big, competitive landscape” for talent, George said.

Today, “travel’s boomed back,” George said. Simpleview employees are back, too, returning vibrancy to the copper-accented building originally constructed for Pulte Homes.

Post-pandemic, employees who live within 30 miles of one of its two offices – Simpleview’s other office is in Liverpool, England – are required to be in the office at least three days a week. In Oro Valley, many choose office hours on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

This moment feels “normal,” George thinks, preferable to those reactionary days of the pandemic.

“We’ve made our way through it, and we’re stronger than ever before,” George said. “We’re back to putting one foot in front of the other, the way we always have.”

A Showplace for Southern Arizona 

“As often as we can,” Simpleview loves to bring its remote workers and clients to Tucson and Oro Valley, George said.

Clients are “just in awe” at what they see and experience, he said. It’s greener than what they expect, and the mountains are breathtaking. “It’s an alien landscape to most people,” he said. And the dining is world-class.

Client meetings are held in a third-floor conference room dubbed Mountain View because Pusch Ridge fills a wall of windows. “We make sure the blinds are up” and guests sit on the tableside facing majesty.

They leave with “a little more energy, a little more excitement,” and the sense that Simpleview excels in part because Tucson and Oro Valley are destinations, too.

Working with the Town

“We had heard” Oro Valley was difficult to work with, George said, recalling when Simpleview set about remodeling its building.

“It was the opposite,” he said. “It was extremely easy to get the approvals we needed.”

George believes town government and the Oro Valley Chamber “work hard to promote business.”

While “nobody” in any community wants more traffic and bigger buildings, George believes communities “always need critical mass, and infrastructure,” to include housing. Assets such as roads and public safety cost money, which comes from economic activity. In turn, economic activity creates quality of life, and attracts families.

He’s hoping those families lead to more generations of CDO graduates who in turn can create businesses in the community he loves.

Pictured above – Ryan George, Co-founder & CEO Simpleview. Photo by Brent G. Mathis


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