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Startup Challenge Finale on May 7 is free, online, and open to the public

(Contributed)

April 16, 2021 — Seaside, CA

Startup Challenge is going 100% virtual… and you’re invited!

The Institute of Innovation and Economic Development is pleased to announce Startup Challenge Monterey Bay’s first-ever 100% VIRTUAL Finale, free and open to the public on Friday, May 7, 2021 from 2-6 PM.

Discover new startups at our online Venture Showcase, watch the Otter Tank pitch competition, and stick around to meet the winners of the Venture, Social Venture, Main Street, and Student divisions.
 
It’s been a long year for everyone, with new business owners facing unique challenges — all the more reason to support local startups in their quest for innovation and development! RSVP and learn more at www.startupchallengemb.com. 

Our ONLINE Venture Showcase will feature finalist companies in all four divisions: Venture, Social Venture, Main Street, and Student. Discover each finalist startup at their own featured company web page.

View final round pitches in the morning, discover new startups at our online Venture Showcase, watch the Otter Tank pitch competition in the afternoon, listen to an inspiring keynote speaker, and stick around to meet the winners of the Venture, Social Venture, Main Street, and Student divisions!

StartupChallenge Monterey Bay is a regional business competition and acceleration program for aspiring entrepreneurs in Monterey, San Benito, and Santa Cruz counties. More than a competition, this competitive acceleration process teaches, coaches, mentors, networks, and connects entrepreneurs to the knowledge and resources they need.

RSVP and learn more at www.startupchallengemb.com.

HISTORY
The Startup Challenge began in 2010 as the Monterey Bay Regional Business Plan Competition. The Challenge was created by the Marina Tech Cluster, a business incubator located at the MBEST Center in Marina. The Marina Tech Cluster closed in 2013, and the Challenge was moved to its current home at the Institute for Innovation & Economic Development in the College of Business at CSUMB.

IMPACT
Over its 11 years to date, over 840 businesses have entered the Challenge. In 2020 a record 132 businesses entered the Challenge, and 26 advanced to the Final Round. All of the previous winners of the Venture division are still active businesses, and they have raised more than $35,000,000 in funding. The 2020 Venture winner infiniRel was accepted into CleanTech Open, the largest cleantech startup accelerator. Two of the earlier winners,  Yoderm (now Apostrophe) (2012) and HeavyConnect (2016), have been accepted into 500 Startups, a world-renowned Silicon Valley accelerator. Main Street winners who have gone on to launch successful businesses include Nece’s Gluten Free Baked Goods in Monterey, New Bohemian Beer in Santa Cruz, Open Ground Studios in Seaside, and the Carmel Honey Company in Carmel.

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