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Charge City, a proposal by Middlebury Institute student Erin Lannon MAIEP ’19 for a turnkey charging solution for electric vehicles, recently won the Student Division of the 10th annual Startup Challenge Monterey Bay, beating out two other finalists to take home first prize of $1,500 in seed money.
“Winning the StartUp Challenge was exhilarating and rewarding!” said Lannon. “The Charge City idea came to me a few months ago and I was able to fine tune my idea through Professor Jeff Langholz’s Green Business Feasibility Assessment class.” The International Environmental Policy student envisions transforming small and medium-sized business parking lots into Electric Vehicle Charging Stations (EVCS), with the goal of installing two to 10 charging stations per location. The business model employs incentives offered by the State of California to offer businesses zero-cost-down charging station installations. “Over the summer I plan to incorporate, raise seed capital and launch a pilot at a medium sized business in Santa Ana, Orange County. I’ll be running on the lean start-up model with the goal of scaling in 2020.”
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By Aliza Hava
Founder & CEO of Musician’s BASS – Business Administration Software for Success
Special to Santa Cruz Tech Beat
May 21, 2019 — Seaside, CA
Aliza Hava wins the top award for “Excellence in Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Commercialization” at The Startup Challenge. Here’s the backstory.
Two years ago I had an idea for a platform that would help independent musicians manage their careers more effectively. After touring the world as an independent singer/songwriter for nearly a decade, working with multi-platinum, Grammy-winning producers, and having my songs included on soundtracks with the likes of Jackson Browne, Ani DiFranco, and Lucinda Williams, I found that despite my achievements, I was having trouble earning a sustainable income. I began to research online music marketing techniques and signed up for every DIY music platform available. But after using many of these tools for some time, I discovered that most of what’s out there falls short of what’s actually needed to manage my workflow, break through the noise, and make a living in the now digitally-driven music industry.
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Monterey, Calif., April 16, 2019– Skywriter Systems Inc., an online omni-channel digital
platform for simple content marketing, announces that they have been selected as one of eight
Finalists in the California State University, Monterey Bay’s (CSUMB) Institute for Innovation and
Economic Development (iiED) Startup Challenge, Venture Division. The Startup Challenge Finale
will be held on May 10th at the Embassy Suites (1441 Canyon Del Rey Blvd, Seaside CA 93955)
at 2:00 pm.
“After more than a decade of starting, leading, and advising companies, I’ve seen a common
need across companies and organization of all types. All of them need an easy and
comprehensive method to identify, reach, and connect to their markets. We created Skywriter
to provide an easy-to-use, powerful platform to enable companies to identify their target
audience, create and curate content, broadcast outreach over email and social media, and
easily create customized webpages to promote and grow businesses.” – John E. Derrick
Startup Challenge Monterey Bay is a new business competition and accelerator program that
supports the founding, funding and growth of new and innovative businesses in the Monterey
Bay region. It offers workshops, feedback, and mentoring to empower entrepreneurs in a
competitive process while empowering entrepreneurs to communicate their ideas effectively to
investors, customers and employees.
In ten years of competition, Startup Challenge Monterey Bay has trained 2,200 aspiring
entrepreneurs from 620 participating companies who have gone on to create more than 150
jobs and raise more than $10 million in capital.
Founded April 2018, Skywriter is an early revenue stage, seed funded SaaS startup offering an
omni-channel digital platform that provides you with a simple way to create and manage your
best digital presence. Skywriter’s product offering provides great value to small businesses,
growth-oriented companies, and information rich education and non-profit organizations. The
platform offers a webpage editor, contact and list manager, content creation and
management, outbound communication creation and scheduling, and usage reporting and
analytics tools with an eager, hands-on service team to help you get oriented. To learn more
about Skywriter, visit www.skywritersaas.com and sign-up for a free trial.
Startup Challenge 10th anniversary invite
Startup Challenge Monterey Bay – created at California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB) under the leadership of Brad Barbeau, the executive director of the Institute for Innovation and Economic Development (iiED) and associate professor of entrepreneurship in the College of Business – will celebrate its 10th anniversary at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Seaside on Friday, May 10 from 2 to 7:30 p.m.
Each ticket holder will receive 100,000 Otter Dollars to use in investing in an “Otter Tank” company of choice. CSUMB students who contact the iiED have preferential entry. The May 10 schedule is as follows: 2 p.m. – Venture Showcase Opens; 3 p.m. – Otter Tank Competition; 6:30 p.m. – Networking
“There are quite a few CSUMB students entered in the Challenge,” stated Barbeau, “although only one has made it to the finals. Several of the student businesses are planning to launch.” Many do not realize that the BUS 410: New Venture Design course – which incorporates the Challenge as part of the curriculum – is open to non-business students and has no prerequisites.
The iiED, housed in the College of Business, is the entrepreneurial hub of the region, organizing events such as the Startup Challenge “to promote entrepreneurship in the Monterey Bay Region and foster the development of a vibrant entrepreneurship ecosystem in the region,” stated Barbeau.
Over the past decade of its history, more than 600 companies have participated and more than $300,000 has been awarded. More than 150 jobs have been created by 2,200 aspiring entrepreneurs who have raised more than $10 million in capital.
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Startup Challenge Monterey Bay Prepares for 10th Annual Competition
SEASIDE, Calif., March 4, 2019– California State University, Monterey Bay’s (CSUMB) Institute for Innovation and Economic Development (iiED) is set to host the 10th annual Startup Challenge Monterey Bay this spring.
The challenge, offering a total of $65K in prizes across four divisions of competition, has seen more than 600 companies participate over ten years and has awarded more than $300K in prize money.
Startup Challenge Monterey Bay is a new business competition and accelerator program that supports the founding, funding and growth of new and innovative businesses in the Monterey Bay region. It offers workshops, feedback, and mentoring to empower entrepreneurs in a competitive process while empowering entrepreneurs to communicate their ideas effectively to investors, customers and employees.
In ten years of competition, Startup Challenge Monterey Bay has trained 2,200 aspiring entrepreneurs from 620 participating companies who have gone on to create more than 150 jobs and raise more than $10 million in capital.
Read the entire press release here.
COB’s Institute for Innovation and Economic Development (iiED) building region’s business ecosystem
What do surfboards made from shrimp shells, organic cold-pressed juice and an ag-tech mobile app for farm management have in common?
They’re all products made by winners of Startup Challenge Monterey Bay, an annual competition for entrepreneurs sponsored by the Institute for Innovation and Economic Development (iiED) at Cal State Monterey Bay’s College of Business (COB). More importantly, the entrepreneurs and their businesses are now part of a thriving “economic ecosystem” in Santa Cruz, Monterey and San Benito counties.
Photo by: Joan Iguban Galiguis
“The iiEd has been the fulcrum of the lever to bring the ecosystem into existence,” said COB Dean Shyam Kamath. “If you look at the contribution the iiEd has made, it’s quite fantastic.”
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