Startup Challenge Returns to CSUMB

March 1, 2018

SEASIDE, Ca., March 1, 2018 – California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB) is set to host the Startup Challenge again this spring for the ninth consecutive year. The Startup Challenge 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.


The competition, which as awarded more than $350K over nine years, offers three divisions for competitors based on the size and scope of their business.

  • Venture Division: Open to businesses that are intended to scale and provide venture-investor level returns.
  • Main Street Division: Open to small businesses, sole proprietorships, and nonprofits.
  • Student Division: Open to students in high school, community colleges, colleges and universities.

Entrepreneurs and startup companies in Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Benito counties, as well as Gilroy and Morgan Hill, may apply to the competition through CSUMB’s Institution for Innovation and Economic Development (iiED). Applications are due by midnight, Monday, March 12th.

Startup Challenge is also offering introduction to Startup Challenge workshops to help prospective contestants prepare their application and business pitch.

Key dates for the Challenge are the application deadline on March 12th, the qualifying round pitches on April 8th, and the final round and venture showcase on May 12th.

The Startup Challenge Monterey Bay is organized by the Institute for Innovation and Economic Development (iiED). The iiED provides programs and events to support entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship in the Monterey Bay region. The iiED is an institute of the College of Business at CSU Monterey Bay.