What to Expect for San Diego Startup Month

October 7, 2021

San Diego Startup Month has just begun. What started eight years ago has grown into one of the biggest highlights in the startup world. Even the pandemic couldn’t stop the momentum of this wildly popular event that went from a week-long program to a month-long event last year.

“We realized that when we went virtual during the pandemic, it allowed people to engage worldwide, and we decided to continue that this year,” said Alexa-Rae Navarro, executive director of Startup San Diego. “This year we turned it into a hybrid program with virtual content as well as in-person events.”

San Diego Startup Month began on Oct. 1 and runs through Oct. 29. A happy hour celebration at Downtown Works Carlsbad kicks off the in-person gatherings on Friday, Oct. 8. 

Join the in person Happy Hour and Start Up Fair at Downtown Works Carlsbad

Daily workshops, conferences and a speaker series including 60 talks from across eight tracks will be available for everyone in the startup community from novice to professional. The tracks include Data, People, Founder, Sales, Marketing, Customer, Designer, and Developer. Pitch competitions and incubator events will also give participants the ability to work on their ideas in real-time with professionals who will help give expert advice and tips to make their business ideas more successful. New to this year’s event is an awards ceremony that highlights startups and makers who are innovating the industry and making a name for themselves.

“The event isn’t just about how to start a company,” Navarro said. “It’s really about validating your ideas, searching for great talent, and learning how to scale your business as you grow as both an entrepreneur or a tech professional looking to work at a startup.” 

The Speakers at San Diego Start Up Month 

Navarro also said the event will include more community involvement this year. 

“Community members, like the Data Science Alliance, will act as curators of content,” Navarro said. This will give others insight into how fellow entrepreneurs started and allow others to hear about their real achievements and trials along the way.

Carlsbad is the ideal location for this event because it continues to be a hub for innovation, specifically around building an ecosystem for tech workers, Navarro said.

Carlsbad offers several co-working spaces and work environments that provide an ideal space for collaborating and mixing with like minds. 

More than $278 million in venture capital was invested in Carlsbad companies last year and a number of IPOs accelerated companies growth and returned capital to early investors.

“Carlsbad has long been a hub of innovation in the San Diego region with global headquarters for tech, life science and action sports companies,” said Christie Marcella, COO of CONNECT. “Those anchors provide infrastructure that enables a really rich environment for the startup ecosystem to continue to thrive. It’s a city that has been building industrial and commercial space so growing startups can stay local and expand.” 

Three major industries in Carlsbad are biotech, logistics tech and sports tech. Navarro added that gaming companies have also moved into the area and are growing at a fast pace. A growth trend is continuing into 2022 — both with the established companies and an increasing number of startups in the same industries. 

“This attracts expert talent to the area which is helping these key industries to grow,” Navarro said. “We want big enterprise in Carlsbad.  But we also want big enterprise mingling with the startups and that happens during Startup Month.”

Tickets for San Diego Startup Month are on sale now. To purchase tickets for all the hybrid events, click here.