Submitted by Kristina Chavez Wyatt
Startup Challenge Monterey Bay is an annual regional business competition and acceleration program for entrepreneurs in the Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz counties. It is a competitive acceleration process that teaches, coaches, mentors, networks and connects entrepreneurs to the knowledge and resources they need. The Challenge provides workshops and mentoring to support the founding, funding and growth of new and innovative businesses in the Monterey Bay region, empowering entrepreneurs to communicate their ideas effectively to investors, customers and employees. Prospective entrepreneurs, startups and emerging companies showcase and develop their business concepts while competing for CASH PRIZES.
The City of Hollister is sponsoring an orientation to be hosted 6-7:30PM Thursday evening, March 1st at the Hollister City Hall Council Chambers located at 375 5th Street in Downtown Hollister. Nothing inspires and prepares entrepreneurs to bring their ideas to market like Startup Challenge Monterey Bay!
Applications are due by midnight, Monday, March 12th for the 2018 Startup Challenge Monterey Bay. The Challenge is open to all entrepreneurs and startup companies in Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Benito counties, as well as the cities of Gilroy and Morgan Hill. Applications are to be completed online at www.startupmontereybay.com and are due March 12th.
The competition has three divisions. Venture division is open to businesses that are intended to scale and provide venture-investor level returns. The Winner receives $20,000 in cash and the two runner-ups each receive $5,000 in cash. The Main Street division is open to small businesses, sole proprietorships and non-profits. The Winner receives $10,000 in cash; the two runner-ups will each receive $2,500 in cash. The Student division is open to students in high school, community colleges, colleges and graduate schools. The Winner receives $1,500 in cash.
Key dates for the Challenge are the application deadline on March 12th, the Qualifying Round pitches at CSUMB @ Salinas City Center on Saturday, April 7th, and the Final Round and Venture Showcase at the CSUMB @ Salinas City Center on May 12th.
The Startup Challenge Monterey Bay is organized by a committee of community volunteers and managed by the Institute for Innovation & Economic Development (iiED). The iiED supports the regional entrepreneurship ecosystem to provide resources entrepreneurs need to be successful. The Institute also offers programs that engage entrepreneurs and managers worldwide in learning about innovation and entrepreneurial practice. The iiED is an institute of the College of Business at CSU Monterey Bay. For more information, see www.startupmontereybay.com or contact StartupMB@CSUMB.edu (831) 582-3230.