Mobile hosted a delegation of top technology executives from Silicon Valley as the city continues to emerge as a destination for IT-based entrepreneurship.
The heads of some of America’s hottest technology companies toured the city and spent time meeting with Mayor Sandy Stimpson, as well as other local business leaders to hear about Mobile’s transformation.
The delegation included founders and chief executives representing Reddit, iCracked, Bellhop, Weebly, Arka, and Fuel Capital, among others. The group arrived in Mobile on April 27 and returned April 30.
“As we continue to expand the tech corridor on St. Louis Street, we felt it was the perfect time to reach out and bring this elite team to Mobile,” Stimpson said. “We can learn so much from what they have accomplished and position Mobile as a target for investors going forward. If we get government out of the way and encourage smart and talented people to take risks, we will establish Mobile as a startup community that embraces a culture of innovation.”
While in Mobile, the team had the opportunity to experience many of the city’s recent transformations. Their itinerary included visits with officials from the mayor’s office, the Innovation Portal, Brookley Aeroplex, the mayor’s Innovation Team, Southern Light and the University of South Alabama. The group also toured several of the city’s historic sites and enjoyed a night on Dauphin Street.
“It was amazing to spend time with the mayor and his team that he’s built,” said A.J. Forsythe, founder and CEO at iCracked. “They’re making a real difference and I was impressed by the growing tech community they’re building. I look forward to providing support, ideas, and mentorship to their entrepreneurs and being helpful any way we can.”
Stimpson said he is already making plans for a tech recruiting trip to Silicon Valley in the coming weeks.
“Innovation and technology are two of the key pillars in our plan to create high-paying jobs in Mobile,” Stimpson said. “I’m excited by the interest we are receiving from these executives and I’m excited to see where we can go as a city.”
Executives participating in the trip included: Steve Huffman, founder and CEO of Reddit and co-founder of Hipmunk; AJ Forsythe, founder and CEO of iCracked Inc.; Grant Morgan, product leader at iCracked Inc., Cameron Doody, founder of Bellhop, Dan Veltri, co-founder and chief product officer of Weebly; Chris Howard, co-founder and managing director of Fuel Capital andPhillip Akhzar, founder and CEO of Arka.