How Hawaii’s Small Business Innovation and Research Program is Shaping the Local Tech Industry


Interested in the latest happenings in the tech and science world, especially as it relates to Hawaii? Then you should be tuning in to Bytemarks Cafe, a local radio show airing every Wednesday on Hawaii Public Radio from 5 to 6 p.m. (HST).

On the 11 February 2015 edition of Bytemarks Cafe, Oceanit’s Ian Kitajima spoke about how the Small Business Innovation & Research (SBIR) programs aid tech companies to conduct early stage research. Since 1982, Hawaii’s SBIR matching grant program has helped small businesses compete for federal research and development funding with over 600 awards totaling $174 million. These awards have provided over $5 million a year in federal research and development capital for Hawaii commercial enterprises.

The next step is for Hawaii’s legislature to expand Hawaii’s SBIR matching grant program to include Phase II and III awards with HB1069 and SB1003. These bills would create a competitive advantage for local companies to move from the research and development phase into a finished product for commercial offering. Hawaii’s SBIR program currently brings in $20 federal dollars for every $1 from the State, helping to create high-paying jobs in STEM fields, and to establish a profitable, self-sustaining technology industry in Hawaii.

Click here to listen to the full Bytemarks Café podcast. For more information about Hawaii’s SBIR program, visit the Hawaii Small Business Innovation Research Program (HISBR) section of HTDC’s website at