Startup Challenge 2019 Grand Prize

Santa Cruz Tech Beat announces Startup Challenge 2019 winner

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

Excerpt

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.

Read the rest of the article here!

KSBW covers Startup Challenge 2019

Click here to see their coverage!

skywriter logo

Skywriter selected as finalist in Startup Challenge Monterey Bay

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.
About Skywriter:
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.

The Lutrinae celebrates Startup Challenge’s 10th anniversary

Startup Challenge Finale logo

Startup Challenge 10th anniversary invite

By Yollette Merritt

Excerpt

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.

Read the entire article here!

Startup Challenge logo

CSUMB Press Release: Startup Challenge 2019

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.

(Excerpt)

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.

CSUMB magazine article in iiED

CSUMB Magazine highlights Institute for Innovation and Economic Development (iiED) efforts to build local startup ecosystem

Fueling Entrepreneurs

COB’s Institute for Innovation and Economic Development (iiED) building region’s business ecosystem

Excerpt

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.

 

Brad Barbeau and Shyam Kamath discussing the institute's success.

Photo by: Joan Iguban Galiguis

Brad Barbeau and Shyam Kamath discuss the iiED’s impact on the region’s entrepreneurs.

“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.”

Read the entire article here!

Hartnell College Maker Space

Hartnell College MakerSpace: Creativity at Work

By Esmeralda Montenegro Owen
Hartnell College
Special to Santa Cruz Tech Beat

June 7, 2018 — Salinas, CA

(Photo above: Guests check out robots at the opening of the dirty lab at Hartnell College. Contributed)

Hartnell College continues to innovate and engage, opening up the minds of the youth in Salinas to imagine and create with the help of the latest technology. This is a possibility thanks to the MakerSpace or Maker movement.

This spring 2018, Hartnell College was awarded 2-years of funding for this project by the Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office totaling $500,000. This special grant is being used for implementation, equipment, staffing, supplies and stipends for faculty and others that are involved in creating workshops and classes for college students, K-12 students and the community at large.

Read More…

That garlic stuff check

BenitoLink Covers Startup Challenge Monterey Bay

Hollister business wins Startup Challenge Monterey Bay

 

Startup Challenge Grand Prize winner Cruz Foam

Congratulations to the 2018 Startup Challenge winners!

The winners of this year’s Startup Challenge Monterey Bay were selected on May 12, 2018 at this year’s Finale celebration at CSUMB @ Salinas City Center.

The Venture Division winner Cruz Foam transforms shrimp shell waste into the eco-friendly equivalent of Styrofoam.  CruzFoam won the $20,000 Venture Division with a fabulous presentation in the Startup Challenge Otter Tank, with AudibleRx and Radicle Snacks landing the runners-up prizes of $5,000 each.

That Garlic Stuff, a homemade garlic sauce made with locally sourced garlic won the Main Street Division, earning a $10,000 cash prize.  Runners-up companies Arti-Culture and Splendid Blended each earned $2,500 prizes.

BOHO Marketplace won the Student Division to earn the $1,500 prize. BOHO, founded by two students from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies, is an innovative and values-based insurance marketplace that provides customers an easy way to compare and purchase insurance policies while also providing insurance to someone in need in an emerging market.

This year, 82 entrepreneurs from the Monterey Bay region entered the Startup Challenge. The Challenge includes three divisions: Venture, for businesses intended to grow into large enterprises; Main Street, for small businesses; and Student, for high school through graduate school students.

These applicants presented their ideas to a panel of judges in the Qualifying Round on April 7th. From that group, 25 finalists were selected to expand their business idea and prepare a 10-minute presentation to a panel of judges in the morning on May 12th.  From these, the top three Venture finalists and the top three Main Street finalists competed in the Otter Tank pitch competition.