The Hawai‘i Business Pivot Grant program on Thursday opened its application portal for eligible Hawai‘i businesses and nonprofits. The grants will distribute $25 million expense reimbursement and training support to struggling small businesses across the state to help them adjust to marketplace changes resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The program will provide approximately 2,500 small businesses with reimbursement grants to cover expenses up to $10,000 that they incurred implementing changes to their operations, products, and services. Click here to access the application portal.

The Hawai‘i Business Pivot Program is a partnership between the Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism (DBEDT) and the Chamber of Commerce Hawai‘i.

“As Hawai‘i businesses and nonprofit organizations continue to pivot and adjust operations to survive, this grant could not come at a more critical time,” said Sherry Menor-McNamara, President & CEO of the Chamber. “We encourage all eligible businesses and nonprofits to apply for the reimbursement grant and take advantage of valuable educational opportunities that are provided through this program.”

Funded by federal CARES Act appropriations, the program provides qualifying businesses reimbursement for eligible expenses incurred since March 20, 2020, including investing in e-commerce, reconfiguring workspaces, adding safety equipment, and implementing new business processes.

The grant application will remain open until Nov. 23, 2020, as funds are available.

In addition to the grant reimbursement, the Hawai‘i Business Pivot Programs offers technical assistance to companies through workshops, training, and consultant resources as they adjust their operations. Click here to sign up for workshops.

Hawai‘i businesses that can provide pivot services are also encouraged to apply to the online marketplace for companies to access products and services to support operational changes, and these costs will be eligible for reimbursement under the grant program. Click here to sign up for the marketplace.

To qualify for the grant, businesses and nonprofits must meet the following criteria:

  • Be registered in the State of Hawaii and have fewer than 100 employees.
  • Operate in a physical commercial space in Hawaii; home-based businesses are not eligible.
  • Have suffered economic injury due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Submit eligible expenses incurred after March 20, 2020, or eligible physical distancing measures incurred Oct. 1, 2020.
  • Been in business prior to March 20, 2020.

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