Get to Know Startups in Innovation Quarter, Winston-Salem

5 minute read

The intersection of Patterson Ave. and Fifth Street in Winston-Salem, NC.

A Few of the Startups that Call iQ Home

A defining characteristic of a startup ecosystem is that it’s made up of organizations of all shapes and sizes. Despite these diversities, each member is also looking to innovate, solve problems and progress their communities. That’s exactly what the following startups are doing right here in Winston-Salem’s Innovation Quarter.

Fluree: Enterprise Data Management

Store, share and secure data safely. That’s what Fluree, a Web3 data platform company, helps clients across the country achieve. Fluree uses blockchain technology to ensure data integrity by eliminating any potential tampering, manipulation or need for third-party apps. Organizations can collect, leverage and understand insights through advanced visual analytics and graph database technology as well.

Fluree joined the Innovation Quarter’s startup ecosystem to partner with the Wake Forest School of Medicine, a quintessential match for innovative development. Combining Wake Forest’s research and clinical care expertise with Fluree’s technological intelligence helps identify results and improve patient healthcare more efficiently. Other major partnerships include cloud infrastructure providers, systems integrators and independent software vendors.

Fluree employees discussing their product.

Clinical Ink: Clinical Trial Technology

Compliant patients are the key to seamless, successful clinical trials, so why not make it easy on them? Clinical Ink empowers patients to design a setup that works for them throughout a clinical trial. Its eSource platform and solutions streamline research and management, capturing and integrating data from the source while providing access to the data anytime, anywhere. This reduces the manual work required and improves the experience for sites, patients and sponsors alike. Patients can participate using their own devices and can switch from one to another if needed, allowing for onsite, remote or hybrid trials.

Born and built in Winston-Salem, Clinical Ink has continued to grow through notable partnerships with major healthcare companies since its conception in 2007.

Doug Pierce is Clinical Ink's co-founder and President.

Renalytix™: Kidney Disease Prevention

Speaking of forward-thinking—Renalytix™ has it down to a science. This startup uses cutting-edge research and technology to prevent kidney disease before its onset. Rather than focusing on the disease itself, Renalytix supports kidney health through risk assessments, disease predictions and clear plans that promote organ and systemic health in the kidneys.

It found its home in the Innovation Quarter through a partnership with Atrium Health, Wake Forest Baptist Health and Wake Forest School of Medicine to reduce the impact of kidney disease in large populations. Working together allows the quad to provide data-driven decision-making and care for individual patients. This collaboration is one of several critical partnerships that allows Renalytix to stay at the forefront of cloud-based digital health technology, data integration and data analytics.

Renalytix logo with data graphic in the background

OnceLogix: Software Development

What happens when a web developer, businessman and financial advisor walk into a church in the Piedmont Triad? OnceLogix, that’s what. This 15-year-old startup was ahead of the game in 2005 when its founders recognized a need for digitizing records and documents within the behavioral health industry. Its custom, enterprise web-based software can develop platforms to assist specific data needs, ultimately allowing organizations to work more efficiently.

OnceLogix is fully Black-owned and operated, whose founders attribute their work culture to Winston’s innovation ecosystem rather than a place like Silicon Valley. A now leading electronic health record company, OnceLogix has more than 400 clients and partners and has been recognized by Inc. Magazine as one of America’s 5000 fastest-growing private companies.

Trinity Manning, OnceLogix cofounder, looking out of a window in an Innovation Quarter building.

The Variable: Innovative Advertising

So long “big agency” business; hello consulting that makes a difference. That’s what brought The Variable to Winston-Salem. Marrying the thinking of an innovation consultancy with the doing of an ad agency means The Variable’s mission focuses on products worthy of advertising.

From branding to business to communication, The Variable rooted itself in Winston to help companies become more people-friendly and unlock disproportionate growth. The leadership calls Winston home because they believe in work-life harmony (a characteristic that hasn’t always been found in major cities) and its connection to better results. In its ten years, its consultants have innovated across a variety of industries—including health insurance, food service, consumer goods and chemical production—and have been awarded Ad Age’s Small Company of the Year and Fast Company’s 100 Best Workplaces for Innovators.

Banners of The Variable's Ad Age awards hang in their offices in the Bailey South building of the Innovation Quarter.

Front Street Capital: Asset Management and Private Equity

Front Street Capital (FSC) is the Innovation Quarter’s gift that keeps on giving throughout Winston-Salem. The investment, development and asset management team helps clients plant physical and monetary roots in strategic locations for long-term business growth. The real estate company focuses on developing, acquiring and repositioning Class A assets to help them increase income, maximize value and hedge risk in diversification.

Not only has FSC helped redevelop parts of the Innovation Quarter with nationally recognized companies, but it’s also transforming areas all along the southeast. Their portfolio includes nearly $500 million of properties within office, industrial, healthcare and mixed-use asset classes.

Front Street Capital team members review plans for Bailey South's redevelopment.

A Diverse Mix of Startups Break Down Corporate Division

From database management to real estate development, partnerships within the Innovation Quarter are formed through a shared desire to bring transformative ideas to life for the good of the community. The network and support gained through innovation districts have proven instrumental to the success of startup companies—and the Innovation Quarter is no exception. From real estate development to database management, we can help you find a partner and start making a difference in Winston-Salem’s Innovation Quarter.

Cover of Innovation Quarter's eBook titled "Ten Reasons Why Winston-Salem is One of the Best-kept Secrets among Entrepreneurs and Startups"

The Secret Is Out

Winston-Salem is rapidly making a name for itself as a top midsized city. From a thriving innovation ecosystem to a diverse cultural experience, Winston-Salem has what startups and entrepreneurs need to hit their stride.