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Betamore, an Education and Coworking Space, to Fill a “Void” in Baltimore

baltimore coworking space

The details on Betamore, a new space in Baltimore, have been pretty sparse so far.

But cofounder Greg Cangialosi shared a bit with Tech Cocktail this week. Yes, there will be coworking space and mentorship, emphasizing product-based startups (vs. services). No, they won’t be investing in companies. And perhaps most interestingly, in true Baltimore spirit, Betamore will focus on education – with classes in programming, pitching, finance, law, design, and development.

Located in Federal Hill, the 8,000-square-foot campus features 2 large classrooms, office space, and conference rooms. Cangialosi, managing director of the Baltimore Angels, is joined by Betamore cofounders Mike Brenner and Sean Lane.

Hear why they started Betamore below, along with Cangialosi’s take on the Baltimore startup scene and the challenges ahead.

Greg Cangialosi

Greg Cangialosi of Betamore

Tech Cocktail: Why did you decide to start Betamore?

Greg Cangialosi: What we’re trying to do is [fill] what we feel is still a pretty big void in the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Baltimore and create a facility that exposes people to entrepreneurship, educates them on a variety of topics that are entrepreneurially minded, and gives them not only that, but also a place to work out of, connect with other peers, other cofounders, other partners – and then finally give them a place to have dedicated workspace when they get companies up and running.

Tech Cocktail: What’s the state of the Baltimore tech scene and how does Betamore fit in?

Cangialosi: I see the status of the Baltimore innovation and technology scene at a really interesting turning point in terms of a lot of the confluence that’s coming together in Baltimore. Universities are activating – they’re starting to come out of their shell, engaging with the broader community – and we’re building bridges with the universities as well. We have a funding community that’s really starting to gel very nicely. We’ve got the Betamores of the world – we’ve got new accelerators in the ETC called Accelerate Baltimore, we’ve got another one in Loyola, another one’s popping up in Johns Hopkins. So we’ve really started to build an early-stage innovation community and programming around facilities, and all these things have pretty strong mentor networks that are behind them.

We’re definitely not firing on all cylinders yet. I really started paying attention to things in 1997, and I’ve been an entrepreneur since I graduated, and I could say probably now Baltimore is at its ripest point for a lot of change and growth in its entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Tech Cocktail: What are some of the challenges for the ecosystem that you’d like to address with Betamore?

Cangialosi: One of the biggest challenges that we have, not really any kind of mystery, is the fact that we have a major talent void here. … We need to do our part in building programs to keep our talent here. We attract a lot of bright people from all over the world to come to Baltimore to get educated. We have more colleges and universities per square mile than anywhere else in the US – little-known fact – and some really top schools. So how do we get those people to stay here so they get attached to the startup culture or the startup culture actually breeds at the university level?

So it’s not only the attraction but it’s also the retention of talent. So we have to start telling our stories as a region a little bit better. … It really affects the overall health of the ecosystem. Branding our region as one that’s known for maybe some key things – for example, education technology. We are ripe for being a hub for startup activity in ed tech, just given not only the colleges and universities, but the experience between Laureate and Sylvan and the Connections Academy and the Noodle Rooms.

So those are the types of things that we are going to try to help businesses work through as they spend time in our facility – and just beyond the facility, I think that’s what we’re working towards in general.

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About the Author
kira@techcocktail.com'

Kira M. Newman is a Tech Cocktail writer interested in the harsh reality of entrepreneurship, work-life balance, and psychology. She is the founder of The Year of Happy and has been traveling around the world interviewing entrepreneurs in Asia, Europe, and North America since 2011. Follow her @kiramnewman or contact [email protected]

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5 Responses to “Betamore, an Education and Coworking Space, to Fill a “Void” in Baltimore”

  1. joseph.reinhart@gmail.com'

    Joe R.

    "We have more colleges and universities per square mile than anywhere else in the US." Citation, please!

    • gcangialosi@gmail.com'

      Greg Cangialosi

      I am pretty sure I prefaced that comment with, I've heard a stat like this before but not ENTIRELY sure of its accuracy. However, whether accurate or not, we have a TON of colleges and universities both public and private in Baltimore, i.e. we have all of the elements (future workforce and talent included), for a vibrant ecosystem to emerge. Its happening. Thanks for reading :-)

  2. jack.rishart@hotmail.com'

    Jack S.

    In all honesty, this is a bunch of blah-blah. Ecosystem? That's just a new-age buzzword— ex: restaurants in the area have an ecosystem. We have all the resources needed in Balt in the higher ed system and elsewhere, esp w/existing tech groups. This ridiculous pitch is all about grabbing a piece of the equity, not about actually helping the businesses to grow and thrive. get real. there have been organizations doing this for decades. because it is tech/internet/social we put a cute 'emerging vibrant ecosystem' wrapper around it means nothing. hard work and a strong market need will make you successful. not sipping coffee in 'noodlespace' (what is that?!) and giving up 20-50% of your equity to the so-called experts. this is all fluff… where is the actual business and what will they do? all i am reading is catchy phrases like 'early stage innovation community' and 'hub for startup activity' … sounds like the same powerpoint ptich these people present at every event. find some cheap space, hire talent, and get going. you can do it without all this baggage.

  3. tod35d9mar@hotmail.com'

    Wilco Peacher

    Hey, I think your website might be having browser compatibility issues. When I look at your website in Ie, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping. I just wanted to give you a quick heads up! Other then that, wonderful blog!

  4. tod35d9mar@hotmail.com'

    Luke Saniatan

    Hi, I think your website might be having browser compatibility issues. When I look at your blog site in Firefox, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping. I just wanted to give you a quick heads up! Other then that, awesome blog!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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