Building a $1 billion tech company in Baltimore

10/26/2023| Julie Miller

Building a $1 billion tech company in Baltimore

10/26/2023 | Julie Miller

Delali Dzirasa started Fearless  in his mother’s basement in 2009, armed with a few thousand dollars and a dream to create a different kind of digital services company. Working mainly in the government tech space, he built a company to challenge the status quo, and to do work so impressive that people couldn't help but talk about it. Fearless adopted a purple cow mascot – symbolizing the company’s commitment to standing out.

Delali Dzirasa headshot

Delali Dzirasa, Fearless CEO & Founder

By building “software with a soul,” Dzirasa wanted Fearless to have an impact by making government services more accessible and usable for both civil servants and the general public. And with this commitment to impact, the purple cow tech company found its niche in a field of brown cows. Its Maryland location also put Fearless in close proximity to a massive government customer pool, helping the company pen contracts with the Department of Defense, Small Business Administration, and many more government clients.

"You have access to some of the biggest opportunities in the world with the federal government right here in our backyard,” said Dzirasa.

As the contracts grew, so did Dzirasa’s office space and his team. Fearless’ first move was into a business incubator affiliated with the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Then, his team moved into a coworking building in downtown Baltimore, where they eventually took over an entire floor.

Over time, the company expanded beyond the government tech space. In recent years, Fearless created an immersive digital experience  for the National Museum of African American History and Culture and announced it was partnering with the NFL to offer digital transformation services .

But after nearly 15 years in the tech field, Dzirasa and his team increasingly recognized that good tech alone couldn’t solve complex problems. That’s why they launched a new division, “Fearless Guides,” in 2023, which focuses on organizational and workforce development.

“We’re finding that good tech isn’t enough,” said Dzirasa. “Organizations need good technology to help drive the outcomes, but it must be underpinned by organizations and people. And when both the technology capabilities and people capabilities come together, we can really drive the impact we want to see in the world.”

As the new division launched, Fearless reaffirmed its commitment to impact, pledging to improve 100 million lives across the globe by 2030. And how exactly does a tech company improve lives at scale? It adheres to a clear set of ethics  and selects projects that create conditions for others to improve lives. Fearless also offers services to help companies identify equity gaps in their business operations, provides funding to BIPOC-owned businesses , and runs an incubator program  for underrepresented entrepreneurs.

Fearless is setting the bar high for revenue goals too, aspiring to achieve $1 billion in revenue by 2030. This year they’re on track to hit $100 million. When Dzirasa reflects on his company’s growth, he proudly calls Fearless’ success story a “Maryland story."

Maryland has been our home since the beginning and has played a role in every stage of our growth and success – from our days in a business incubator – to growing our team to more than 200 employees. In Maryland, we find our customers, mentors, and funding partners.
— Delali Dzirasa, Fearless CEO & Founder

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