Startup Mendocino:
Business Bootcamp and Pitch Competition

So you think you have a great idea? Something that will improve the environment, perhaps? Ignite a new creative industry? Maybe a product you know people need badly? Or a new, creative service that this County needs? Startup Mendocino can be the start you need to take you from idea to reality.

Startup Mendocino is a pitch competition and Business Bootcamp from West Business Development Center. West Business Development Center has been providing free business advising to small businesses in Mendocino County for more than 30 years. Now, we have put together an intense series of trainings culminating in a business pitch competition to hone your presentation skills. Applicants who are selected to participate in Startup Mendocino will learn to clarify their business model, understand their financials, identify their value proposition and assess their capital needs -- and deliver the best business pitch ever.

Startup Mendocino is open to all emerging entrepreneurs and established business owners in Mendocino County.  Applications (below) open May 13th and close June 10th. This program will accept 12 applicants to participate in a Business Bootcamp. Five finalists will go on to compete for a $10,000 cash first prize from the John and Sandra Mayfield Family Economic Development Fund of the Community Foundation of Mendocino County, $5,000 cash second prize from Adventist Hospital and $2,500 cash prize from Savings Bank of Mendocino County. All five finalists will receive Chamber memberships from the Ukiah, Coast and Willits Chamber of Commerce - in addition to other prizes.

On August 25th, at an open-to-the-public gala event at the Mendocino College Theater, the five finalists will compete before a live audience for these prizes.

We’re looking for undiscovered people, ideas and businesses in Mendocino County

  • People with creative ways to approach old problems

  • People with energy and passion

  • People seeking to do new things in the community they love

  • People who want to shake things up

  • People who want to start businesses that shape communities in new ways

Our Sponsors

Apply Today

If you have a unique business idea, a business that has been open for a few years, or a business that is established - but you have a new idea, we encourage you to apply. If selected, you will be required to attend three training workshops that will prepare you for your pitch.

  • June 24 (Ukiah)

  • July 8 (Fort Bragg)

  • July 22 (Ukiah)

All applicants with be required to attend the semi-final round, August 4th. If you are a finalist, you will also be required to attend the Gala event, Sunday August 25th from 3 to 6 pm.


  • Applications open May 13 and close on June 10th. We will not be able to accept applications outside of these dates.

  • This is not a loan program.

  • Open to all residents of Mendocino County.

  • Because of our federal funding, businesses unfortunately cannot be cannabis cultivation.

  • If you need any help or have any question please call us at (707) 238-2108.

  • If you only speak Spanish please call (707) 513-5863.

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ in English. FAQ in Spanish.

Startup Mendocino Application

Name *
Do you currently have a business ? *
Are you available to commit to the following dates and times for the Business Bootcamp and Gala June 24, July 8, July 22, Aug 4 and Aug 25? *
How did you hear about Startup Mendocino? *

Our Sponsors

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Sponsorship Opportunities

If you would like to be a sponsor for Startup Mendocino, click here.