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Grants For Hawaii Small Businesses in 2024

Written by: Jody Adams
Last updated: January 31, 2024

Like all other hard-hit small businesses, yours might have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2024. Businesses, families, and communities can apply for various business grants. Small businesses in Hawaii will be able to grow and sustain their businesses with the help of these resources and information.

Hawaii has $3.26 billion in federal government grants and $2.56 billion in local government funding. Small businesses can apply for Hawaii small business funds regardless of their type. The number of businesses in Hawaii is 25,746, and the number of farms is 8,000.

Additionally, grants can help businesses launch marketing campaigns, hire more staff, and close cash flow gaps. Payroll and salary payments in Hawaii total $17.74 billion annually. An average of 3,675 bankruptcy petitions are filed by Hawaii residents each year. It is impossible to receive federal grants for a new business start-up or an expanding company. Start-ups and expansions of existing businesses can also receive funding from private or nonprofit organizations grant awarding bodies in addition to government grants.

What Is A Grant?

The funds awarded by government/private authorities or agencies can be used to develop products, businesses, or projects. In contrast to secured loans and loans backed by the government, grants cannot be repaid. A grant can also replace a loan, which must be repaid, as a source of business financing. This is why grant programs are extremely beneficial for small businesses.

Despite the low cost of grants, the application and administration process can be lengthy. The purpose of a small business funding application is to demonstrate how the funding will assist you in building a successful company. Foundations, local governments, and non-profit organizations offer a wide range of grant funding options.

Hawaii Small Grants

There are several grants available to Hawaii residents. In 2024, business owners may be able to apply for a variety of grants.

SSBCI Small Business Grants

The State of Hawaii's application for the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI), which was part of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, was approved by the United States Treasury on May 19, 2022. A $62 million federal grant will expand access to capital for small businesses, start-ups, and entrepreneurs in Hawaii under the SSBCI Program. Participation is approved for Hawaii as one of the first states in the nation.

Three tranches of funds will be released, with the first tranche worth $19.8 million. It is expected that Hawaii's economy will receive more than $600 million in matching private investments due to the program that requires private investment.

HI-CAP Offerings

Hawai'i small businesses will have access to four types of offerings through HI-CAP:

  1. HI-CAP Collateral is a program in which the state will partner with local financial institutions to assist small businesses in obtaining financing or securing better terms.
  2. HI-CAP Loans are a state-managed program that lends directly to businesses for community-impacting projects. Economic development projects may include renewable energy, innovation, local agriculture, dual-use technology, manufacturing, and creative industries.
  3. HI-CAP Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Loan Pool Program is designed to assist Hawai'i CDFIs in providing low-interest loans to very small businesses. Small businesses in Hawai'i, including underserved ones, will benefit from this program.
  4. The SSBCI 1.0 HSDC Venture Capital Investment Program and HI-CAP Invest will be merged to form a Fund-of-Funds Venture Capital Program called HI-CAP Invest. A primary objective of the program is to invest in high-quality investment managers with the capacity to mentor, advise, and facilitate follow-on investments for entrepreneurs.

There is expected to be a continuation of HI-CAP until September 30, 2030.

Amber Grants For Women

Grants for women-owned businesses can be found on various websites if you search for them on Google. We know that the Internet is full of scams and confusing government websites (SBA). In most cases, you will be asked to provide personal and financial information on forms and applications.

Your new business venture may be able to obtain funding through the WomensNet website. You will have to spend some time and effort completing it, but it will be well worth it. This is a worthwhile task, regardless of how much time and effort it takes to complete. Whether you want to pursue your business dreams or learn about Amber Grants, a lot of help is available.

Women-owned or operated businesses across the country (including Hawaii) are eligible to apply. You have a great opportunity to apply for the $10,000 Amber Grant every month if you are interested. I would be happy to hear from you if you are interested. Consider applying if you're interested in becoming one of their 12 monthly winners. If you meet their eligibility criteria, you'll automatically be eligible for a grant of $25,000 as a monthly winner. A total of $35,000 can be awarded to the recipient over 12 months through the grant.

Hawaii State Trade Expansion Program (HiSTEP)

HiSTEP, Hawaii's State Trade Expansion Program, funded partly by the US Small Business Administration (SBA), is based on a multifaceted approach to export development. Participants in the program receive comprehensive export assistance, readiness, counseling, training, and targeted and customized activities to increase export sales. Several agencies and organizations collaborate to carry out HiSTEP under the direction of the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT). The U.S. Commercial Service and the Hawaii Pacific Export Council are partners. The Foreign Trade Zone No. 9, Hawaii Department of Agriculture, SBA Hawaii District Office, Small Business Development Centers, and Innovate Hawaii (High Technology Development Corporation) continue to support small businesses.

Hawaii Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR)

Small businesses can win federal R&D awards through a three-phased Federal program worth $2.2 billion. Funds can be obtained from HTDC's Hawaii SBIR Matching Grant program if Hawaii-based companies receive federal Phase I SBIR awards for feasibility studies. Matching grants can provide companies up to 50% of their Phase I award to enhance their Phase I project development, compete for more lucrative Phase II awards to develop prototypes, and ultimately achieve commercial success. New SBIR companies in Hawaii can apply for funds through HTDC's Hawaii SBIR Phase 0 Grant program. Grants of up to $3,000 are available to those companies that submit a competitive Phase I SBIR application. These grants help applicants to strengthen their proposals by providing professional grant writing assistance. To be eligible, Hawaii companies must have submitted no more than three SBIR applications and have demonstrated financial need.

High Technology Development Corporation – Innovate Hawaii

Hawaii's High Technology Development Corporation's Program aims to provide best practices at an affordable price to small and medium-sized manufacturing and pre-manufacturing businesses.

Inventive Hawaii (IH) is dedicated to finding, saving, and making money for manufacturers across all industries.

As a general practitioner, IH offers a wealth of knowledge and meets the needs of various industries. Their expertise across a wide range of industries in Hawaii has worked in food processing, agriculture, construction materials, management consulting, SBIR/STTR grant assistance, electronics, metals, secondary wood, textiles, and biotechnology.


GrantWatch provides small businesses with access to grants relevant to their needs. Furthermore, through the website, small businesses can obtain loans and grants from local, state, and federal sources. With GrantWatch, you can find new grants and communicate with grant writers who can assist you in preparing winning grant proposals. GrantWatch is a free service that helps you find new grants. Filling out a grant application only takes a few minutes.

Only subscribers with a Hawaii GrantWatch subscription can access the information contained in the database. An annual fee of $199 and a weekly subscription fee of $18 apply. Free members cannot submit grant applications since they are not eligible.

The Bottom Line

For small business owners looking to start or grow their businesses, the Hawaii Small Business Development Center (MSSBDC) offers a variety of resources. Small businesses have received financial assistance from government and private organizations to overcome Coronavirus. Financial aid can boost the economy in various ways by promoting the economic growth of small businesses. The best way to get funding for your business is to choose a funding source from the above list.

Also Learn about Grants For Small Businesses in PA

Are you interested in learning more about different grants and programs that can help you with your living situation? Check out the rest of Gov Relations' blog section today!

Jody Adams
Jody Adams is an accomplished editor-in-chief with a deep understanding of social care and government benefits issues. With a background in journalism and a master's degree in Public Policy, Jody has spent her career shaping the narrative around social policies and their impact on society. She has worked with renowned publications, effectively bridging the gap between complex policy analysis and public understanding. Jody's editorial expertise ensures that vital information on social care and government benefits reaches a broad audience, empowering individuals to make informed decisions.
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