Press Releases

November 18, 2015

TechFire Client Motobriiz Pitches Tech at Expo

The Energetics Technology Center’s (ETC) TechFire incubation program announces today that their client, Motobriiz, LLC., successfully pitched their business at TEDCO’s 2015 Entrepreneur Expo at the BWI Marriott in Linthicum, Maryland. Expo attendance is estimated to be 700 entrepreneurs, ecosystem builders, supporters, and investors.


Mike Steele, Founder of Motobriiz, LLC pitching at TEDCO’s 2015 Entrepreneur Expo as one of Startup Maryland’s Great Eight finalists. Photo courtesy of the Eric Franklin Entrepreneurial Accelerator.

Motobriiz founder, Mike Steele, participated in Startup Maryland’s Pitch Across Maryland program when TechFire brought the pitch bus to Charles County Maryland for a stop at All American Harley Davidson in Hughesville as part of the Southern Maryland Technology and Innovation initiative. Steele, along with four other entrepreneurs, created video pitches on the bus which were then voted on by friends and family and viewed by investors and expert entrepreneurs. Eight more entrepreneurs pitched on the bus at the next stop in St. Mary’s County. Steele was selected as one of the eight entrepreneurs out of 150 pitches across the state to present at the Expo.

“Mike is truly the product of strong eco-system support provided in Southern Maryland. He took advantage of our local SMIT MeetUps, worked with TEDCO, and works now one-on-one with his TechFire Entrepreneur in Residence. His presentation was clear, crisp, and flowed logically. His market research was well-thought-out and addressed the judges concerns. Mike has a solid plan and he’s clearly working that plan. We are thrilled to be working with him as a TechFire incubation client,” said Kim Mozingo with ETC’s TechFire program.



Motobriiz Founder Steele describes the experience of pitching his motor cycle chain oiler technology on the Startup Maryland Pitch Bus in September 2015.



Robin Finnacom, Deputy Director of the St. Mary’s County Economic Development Department and SMIT co-founder, “SMIT is working hard in our county and across Southern Maryland to support the creative entrepreneurs who will drive economic diversification throughout the region. We have a great team of eco-system builders working together to provide the right guidance and support. I’m happy to announce that next year’s Pitch Across Maryland tour will include all three Southern Maryland counties: Calvert, Charles, and St. Mary’s.”

Motobriiz is growing their manufacturing capability as they continue to support their international customer-base. Steele said, “I’m fortunate to have the right team of experts supporting and advising me. With one-on-one mentoring with my TechFire EiR, I’m focusing now on targeted market research with great results. I’m looking forward to pitching next year with even greater results.”

image005Startup Maryland Pitch Across Maryland stop at All American Harley Davidson in Hughesville, MD (Harry Brown, Co-founder of Flier; Gail Schnell, President Schnell-Tech Solutions LLC; Mike Steele, Founder Motobriiz, LLC; Kim Mozingo, Energetics Technology Center’s TechFire Incubation Program; Mike Binko, Founder | CEO of Startup Maryland; Temi Akinwumi, Co-founder, Top Tech Group; and Angela Singleton, TEDCO’s RBI2)



TechFire, the Energetics Technology Center’s innovation and incubation engine, works with technology-focused startups and entrepreneurs to catalyze business success. With the TechFire five-phased incubation process, entrepreneurs and small businesses work with staff, advisors, and a dedicated Entrepreneur in Residence – an expert serial entrepreneur – who guides them through a tailored process of building a robust, sustainable business.

For more information about how TechFire’s technology incubation program can ignite your business’s success, visit the TechFire website to apply, or call at 301-645-6637, extension 711.

November 11, 2015

TechFire Entrepreneur Selected as Startup Maryland Great Eight Finalist

TechFire today proudly announces their client, Motobriiz, LLC., has been selected out of 150 other Maryland entrepreneurs as one of the Great Eight (8) Finalists in Startup Maryland’s 2015 Pitch Across Maryland tour. The Great Eight earned the opportunity to present an extended pitch at the 2015 TEDCO Entrepreneur Expo. The winning Motobriiz video pitch is posted on the Startup Maryland YouTube channel.


“The entrepreneurial eco-system both in Southern Maryland and across the state is really strong and the Startup Maryland pitch bus competition is just another great example of the support and opportunities that help get small businesses off to a solid start. I’ve been attending SMIT, the Southern Maryland Innovation and Technology MeetUps, for quite some time and was fortunate to connect with TechFire at the August MeetUp. As a TechFire client, I found the pitch coaching and advice from my expert advisor to be invaluable. With this support, I feel well-prepared to share my innovation at the Entrepreneur Expo,” said Mike Steele, Founder of Motorbriiz, LLC.


“TechFire proudly sponsored five incredible entrepreneurs with innovative solutions for this year’s Startup Maryland Pitch Across Maryland bus tour. As one of our newer incubation clients, we couldn’t be more thrilled that Motobriiz was selected as a winner. It’s been a joy to work with Mike, Motobriiz founder, through our incubation process and we look forward to helping him refine his Expo pitch and continue to support his progress through our TechFire program,” said Kim Mozingo with the Energetics Technology Center’s TechFire Southern Maryland Program.


Partnering with Mike Binko, Founder | CEO of Startup Maryland, and Robin Finnacom, Deputy Director, St. Mary’s County Department of Economic Development, TechFire hosted the first stop on the Southern Maryland route for Pitch Across Maryland at Harley Davidson in Hughesville, Maryland. From there the bus continued on to St. Mary’s County where more entrepreneurs got on the bus to pitch. The Southern Maryland entrepreneurial eco-system participated in a SMIT-hosted culminating celebration at Elements Eatery & Mixology in Lexington Park, Maryland.


TechFire, the Energetics Technology Center’s innovation and incubation engine, works with technology-focused startups and entrepreneurs to catalyze business success. With the TechFire five-phased incubation process, entrepreneurs and small businesses work with staff, advisors, and a dedicated Entrepreneur in Residence – an expert serial entrepreneur – who guides them through a tailored process of building a robust, sustainable business.


For more information about how TechFire’s technology incubation program can ignite your business’s success, visit the TechFire website to apply, or call at 301-645-6637, extension 711.



October 27, 2015

Startup Maryland Unveils Participants for the “Pitch Across Maryland” Tour and Celebration of Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Press Release:

Startup Maryland™ today unveils the 138 video pitches from the participants in the 2015 Pitch Across Maryland competition.  After posting the video pitches from Maryland entrepreneurs that were captured during the three-week Pitch Across Maryland bus tour, Startup Maryland is proud to announce that the two Video Pitch Competitions are now underway.  You can find the various Playlists for each tour stop location where companies pitched on the Startup Maryland YouTube Channel.

“Once again, the startup ecosystem in Maryland shines bright…Now that the dust has settled from our whirlwind tour around the state, the diversity of industries/innovations and the passion embodied in our entrepreneurs show the spirit of free enterprise is beaming brightly in the Old Line State. We now begin the two separate competitions that define the next stage of the Pitch Across Maryland. The first competition is something fun we refer to as the Fan Favorite and the second competition will reveal our Great 8 Finalists” stated Mike Binko, Founder | President of Startup Maryland. 

To be crowned Fan Favorites, participant companies and their supporters need to get the word out about their video and let family, friends and fans know that their video is now available for viewing. The viewing/voting will continue until 12:00pm (noon) ET on Friday, November 6, 2015. At that time the three Pitch Across Maryland companies with the most tallied views will be declared Fan Favorites for the 2015 tour.

During the same period through noon on November 6, TEDCO has agreed to have Maryland Entrepreneurs Resource List (MERL) team representatives review every 2015 pitch with an eye toward programs and resources that might be appropriate. Additionally, an expert panel of investors (angel/VC) and successful entrepreneurs will select eight (8) companies as the Great 8 Finalists for 2015.  The Great 8 Finalists receive invitations to the annual TEDCO Entrepreneur Expo held November 17.

At the Entrepreneur Expo, the Great 8 Finalists will be given the opportunity to present a more comprehensive ‘pitch’ of their venture and opportunity,” stated Shahab Kaviani, Entrepreneur-in-Residence, Startup Maryland.

“This type of sustained deal-flow discovery and development is unique to Maryland and a strong element to aligning resources with the right opportunity at the right time.

added Kaviani.

Building on the 2-4 minute Pitch Across Maryland video, the Entrepreneur Expo Finalist pitches will be longer and afford the Finalists a chance to share more detail about their venture/opportunity with ecosystem builders including investors, incubators/accelerators and economic development officers.
“Finalists will present their business plans to the full community of conference attendees and another panel of investor/entrepreneur experts who will then select and announce the Pitch Across Maryland Winner and a Runner-up live at the Expo,” added Binko.
TEDCO will select up to two (2) of the Finalists to be catapulted directly to a Technology Commercialization Fund or Cybersecurity Innovation Fund $100,000 investment pitch. The selected Companies will have to submit a TEDCO-compliant application for evaluation. In addition, members of the media are being directed to all Video Playlists to learn more about the innovations and entrepreneurs building great companies in Maryland and across the broader Mid-Atlantic region.

Special thanks to our full tour sponsors whose partnership made this tour successful.


About Startup Maryland:

Startup Maryland ( is a venture and community development initiative launched out of the Startup America Partnership. Driven from within the community and Forged with Maryland Pride By Entrepreneurs … For Entrepreneurs, Startup Maryland strives to remain nimble and inclusive. Startup Maryland works to connect innovation communities and rallies entrepreneurs, supporters and other innovation stakeholders around four main initiatives: Connection, Celebration, Coaching, and Capital while also bringing together entrepreneurs in a community of support to drive greater economic outcomes.

September 22, 2015

Aspiring Entrepreneurs Make Their Pitch

The bus pulled into Southern Maryland Sept. 17 looking for pitchers. The lot wasn‘t filled with baseball scouts. The Startup Maryland folks were looking for budding entrepreneurs ready to pitch their business ideas. With stops at All American Harley Davidson in Hughesville and Elements Eatery in Lexington Park they got an interesting range of ideas from almost a dozen enterprising individuals.

September 14, 2015

TechFire Brings the Startup Maryland Pitch Across Maryland Bus to Charles County

TechFire, Southern Maryland’s Technology Incubator, brings entrepreneurs from across Southern Maryland together at All American Harley Davidson in Hughesville, MD – the center of the region – to strut their stuff and pitch their products and services on the Startup Maryland Pitch Across Maryland Bus tour. Incubator clients and other entrepreneurs from Charles and surrounding counties prepare pitches that are professionally videotaped on the bus to be shared on social media and with potential investors.

“This is going to be a great opportunity for any startup to network with the resources that can help them establish or grow their business and for those businesses that offer services that help business grow and prosper,” said Sue Greer, Chamber of Commerce Board Chair.

The Startup Maryland tour bus arrives wrapped in Maryland state flag colors on Thursday, September 17, 2015 at Harley Davidson in Hughesville at 2PM. TechFire partners will be there to showcase the services that comprise Charles County’s entrepreneurial ecosystem and will include the Charles County Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development, the Hughesville Business and Civic Alliance, and other service providers.

“With this inaugural event, we’re excited to bring together people from across the region who love innovative entrepreneurs as much as we do, and are happy to offer the opportunity to showcase the many resources we have in Southern Maryland that are available to stoke that entrepreneurial fire and keep it burning,” said Kim Mozingo, TechFire Incubation Associate Manager.

For more information, contact Kim at or call 301-645-6637, extension 711.




March 1, 2015

TechFire Value & Graduates:

Kingdomware Technologies® develops custom web, software, data & mobile applications solutions for government, businesses and nonprofits.  Kingdomware also provides web based mass notification, incident management, document storage, human relations and indirect rates calculation solutions.  Our experience with TechFire was invaluable and focused on – our web based solution for churches. helps churches or ministries notify, remind, connect, reach and teach its members, ultimately building up the church community as a whole. When it comes to, TechFire helped Kingdomware connect with their prospective customers, see through their customers’ eyes and refine their value proposition to attract them. We are already experiencing an increase in interest and sales as a result.

A-JAC Services, LLC, is certified as a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) and Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) company that provides customized IT services to government and commercial organizations throughout the United States since 2012. A-JAC Services are a Logistics and Information Technology service provider with capabilities to support a wide range of integrated business solutions. A-JAC’s methods ensure the best bond between technology and business processes and delivers quantifiable benefits to our customers. Our goal is to identify and navigate growth opportunities within the federal and commercial sectors. Our services include, but not limited to: Logistics & Office Services and IT Operations & Management.

TechFire was very inspirational in helping A-JAC move to the next level by offering critical feedback in key areas, such as communications, interpersonal relationships, technical abilities, and change management. We learned from TechFire’s expertise about completing a strong Operating Agreement and TechFire gave us access to a friendly ear with which to share frustrations as well as successes.

TechFire has highly skilled employees and has the experience of getting companies to the next level with its professional business structure. A-JAC gained a significant amount of business knowledge through the discussion of topics such as setting short term to long term goals, and developing a solid business structure, to operate a business starting from day one. The one-on-one meetings with TechFire’s serial entrepreneurs are highly beneficial to A-JAC Services’ growth.