With the recent surprise visit by Facebook billionaire Mark Zuckerberg in Mobile and Bayou La Batre still fresh on the minds of many residents, this episode of Lagniappe’s Real Deal digs into the strength of the local tourism industry.

Real Deal host Ron Sivak sat down with Scott Tindle, a local dynamic entrepreneur who has started several companies in the area, one of which is the popular Gulf Coast Ducks boat Tours.

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In part one of a two-part series, Tindle talked about tourism and what it will take to attract higher volumes of out-of-town visitors to the area. Big ideas on how to raise visibility to be more on par with similarly sized metro markets like Savannah or Charleston were discussed.

Graduating Alabama’s School of Law to practice commercial litigation, Tindle almost immediately switched gears to find his passion as an entrepreneur outside of the corporate world. He achieved early notoriety appearing on Shark Tank in 2012 pitching TieTry, a local startup that he and his then partner marketed as “Netflix for Ties”.

Although the pitch did not impress Mark Cuban or the rest of the celebrity panel enough to invest, the exposure was invaluable. Eventually Tindle returned home with a cavalcade of creative concepts with the goal of contributing towards an industry both former Mayor Mike Dow and current Mayor Sandy Stimpson (among others) have voiced as a critical next-level initiative for elevating Mobile.

In this “tourguide” episode we explore:

1:45 — why Tindle started the Gulf Coast Duck Boat Tours

2:35 –- the definition of “Entrepretourism”

7:25 — how to make Mobile a major tourism destination

10:25 — Ripley’s “Believe It or Not” founder, Jim Patterson Jr.’s evaluation of the local tourism scene

11:46 — the latest scoop from Tindle on what’s being done with Fort Conde

15:58 — examples of successful for-profit tourism model the city could follow

16:44 — final argument for driving tourism via a for-profit model vs. traditional nonprofit entities

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Thanks for listening and keep Mobile funky.

Lagniappe’s Real Deal Podcast is produced in collaboration with Deep Fried Studios.