March 2015

Santa Clara University Startup Accelerator CAPE Now Accepting Applications

SANTA CLARA, Calif., March 19, 2015 –  Applications are being accepted through May 31 for the sixth session of Santa Clara University's California Program for Entrepreneurship (CAPE) –a program for California businesses that is part startup accelerator, part entrepreneur incubator, and part mini-MBA bootcamp.

CAPE welcomes businesses of all kinds, provided they are:

  • based in California;
  • deemed by evaluators to be realistic and viable; and
  • have the potential to make a positive impact on the community.

CAPE alumni have successfully launched businesses ranging from an online personal stylist to gourmet hot dogs to elder care, as well as more technology-centric enterprises like an off-grid portable solar power station to engineering consulting firms to mobile apps for retailers.

Unlike most entrepreneurship programs, CAPE is free, and the program takes no equity interest in the businesses it helps to launch.

“Small businesses are the lifeblood of our economy,” said Daniel Aguiar, executive director of Santa Clara University’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, which created CAPE in 2010.  “The goal of CAPE is to help our students develop and launch their good ideas for products or services into thriving businesses."

In its first five years, 141 entrepreneurs have graduated from CAPE, representing 117 ventures.  Of those, more than 80 percent are still active and growing or have been sold.

CAPE is supported by more than 150 volunteer mentors, judges, guest speakers and panelists, representing finance, marketing, legal, technology, consumer goods, food service and more.

Candidates must apply for the program and provide an overview of their business idea and the market opportunity. Approximately 40 aspiring entrepreneurs will be selected for the 2015 program, held on seven weekends over six months in June through November.  Participants work with business school faculty, coaches and mentors to refine their business plans, financial models, marketing strategies and fundraising efforts.  The program culminates with a business plan pitch competition and awards ceremony.

Applications for the 2015 CAPE program are due by May 31, 2015.   Applications are available online at

About Santa Clara University Leavey School of Business
The Leavey School of Business at Santa Clara University began in 1923, and was one of the first business schools in the country to receive national accreditation. Its undergraduate business, MBA, and Executive MBA programs are consistently ranked among the top in the nation by BusinessWeek, U.S. News, Princeton Review, and others. The curriculum at all levels emphasizes the leadership role of business in creating prosperity within an ethical framework, as well as business responsibilities for social justice and sustainability in the global marketplace. For more information, see

Media Contact
Deborah Lohse | SCU Media Relations | | 408-554-5121


CAPE,Leavey School of Business