The Baltimore Startup 5: Volume II

Nic China Baltimore Startup 5

The Need-To-Know Startups In Charm City

Back for round two of The Baltimore Startup 5.

Every other week over a 10 week period, I’m giving you a bit of my perspective on who’s doing innovative & groundbreaking stuff in the Baltimore startup world.

The bi-weekly Startup 5 consists of 5 amazing young Baltimore area businesses that you should know about, if you don’t already.

So here goes, the second group of companies that made the cut in The Baltimore Startup 5.

NewsUp Baltimore Startup


NewsUp was founded by Andrew Schuster and Coleman Anderson in 2012. Their founding premise was to make keeping up with the news just as fun as playing games. 

So what happens when you cross-breed the two ideas of keeping up with the news and playing games? You get NewsUp, a trivia game for informed people in the form of an online platform to "play the news".

NewsUp is designed to make it fun to keep up with your favorite topics and challenge your knowledge of current events. All of the questions are fact-checked to maintain the highest quality of content, while their goal is to provide you with a ridiculously fun, yet thought provoking experience. 

NewsUp has done a great job of making current events fun, but in my opinion the underlying value is the in the format. Their trivia style multiple choice questions are fact based, removing bias and provoking retention to memory, more so than any news article or TV story.

So pop on over to and try your hand!

InceptionPad Tan Lu Startup Baltimore


Founded in 2011, InceptionPad provides cost effective and scalable design and development services for mobile applications and custom websites. 

The InceptionPad website states, "We are proud to deliver beautiful web and mobile apps that iterate your vision to perfection and surpass your expectations at a fraction of the cost and delivery time. Let us brainstorm with you on requirements and design, and build you a technical team carefully selected from hundreds of developers who live to code." 

Yes, you read the second part of that right, but I'll reiterate: "build you a technical team carefully selected from hundreds of developers".

This is what sets InceptionPad apart from the others, their business structure and their highly targeted technical approach.

Founder and  CEO Tan Lu has built his executive team and project management team in Baltimore, but has teamed up with Beijing University of Post and Telecomunication (considered to be the "MIT of China") to put together a robust team of up to 300 graduate student developers. 

This large pool of young talented developers makes InceptionPad extremely agile. They can cherry pick for specific skills, put together small teams and large teams, and work within any timeline. Whether you need a team of 5 for 3 months or a team of 10 for a year, InceptionPad has your project covered. 

So when you come up with the next great app idea, InceptionPad will help you bring it to life! 

Intrinsic Events Baltimore Startup


For those of you who may already read the Startup Soiree blog, you're well aware of Intrinsic Events. Co-founders of Intrinsic, Jessica Gignac and Rachel Robinson are also partners of mine in the Startup Soiree movement and fellow Baltimore entrepreneurs. Knowing that these movers and shakers are focused on helping develop the Baltimore Startup landscape, I would be remiss to leave them off this list.

Intrinsic Events is a full service event management company, whose multi-faceted team covers everything from weddings to destination management to corporate events and conventions. 

After honing their skills as event planners working for a large corporation, Jessica and Rachel took the plunge and went out on their own to create an Events Empire. With a solid base of know-how and --you guessed it -- intrinsic motivation, this company is growing fast and picking up steam. 

Whether you are looking for quantifiable ROI for the trade show you are putting on, or just looking to throw a blowout party, Intrinsic Events is your best ally.

Baltimore Rex News Startup


Baltimore Rex was founded in 2014 by Daric Snyder and is rapidly catching fire. Its focus is creating local news and content apps, tools, and services that put the needs of a mobile/digital audience first.

The first product that Daric has rolled out is Daily Draft – a weekday email delivering the most important, interesting news in Baltimore. As a subscriber for the last several months, I can honestly say that Baltimore Rex has kept me more in-the-know with local news than ever before. 

For the entrepreneur, or really anyone with a busy, "on-the-go" schedule, Baltimore Rex is the perfect way to consume daily news in under two minutes. It is easy to scan, easy to share, and best of all? It's ad free!

Baltimore Rex aims to "declare war on lousy online advertising on local media sites" There are a lot of unmet needs, unheard voices, and unsolved problems in local media worth chasing after, especially in Baltimore.

Daric plans to roll out more products in support of his Daily Draft in the near future, so stay tuned! For now, go subscribe to the Baltimore Rex weekday email. You won't regret it.

Flyboost Chris Riddle Baltimore Startup


Flyboost was founded by Chris Riddle and Nick Cuttonaro in 2014. It is a tool for DJs, venues, and entertainment professionals to integrate the power of social media at parties, promotions, and events in real-time.

The Flyboost platform formats social media content for display on any TV or screen.  By using a designated #hashtag, people can see themselves on TV -- and everyone loves to be in the spotlight and have their moment of fame!

Co-founder Chris Riddle says: "Since Flyboost can add real value to any business, our goal is to have our technology running in as many places as possible, including bars, restaurants, nightclubs, hotels, weddings, and trade shows."  

Flyboost also plans to offer a fully managed event service for clients who would prefer to take a more "hands-off" approach but still want to use this cutting-edge social technology.

This is a product that you really have to see to get a feel for, so check this out: Video of Flyboost in action! 

I love you Charm City.

Follow Nicolas China on Twitter @Nico_C7.

Nic is co-founder and owner of Pixilated (@PixilatedPhoto) &Startup Soiree (@StartupSoiree).