STATE LAUNCHES NEW PROGRAM TO INCREASE ACCESS TO CAPITAL FOR SMALL BUSINESSES

July 12, 2022

HONOLULU – The Hawai‘i State Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism (DBEDT) today announced the launch of a new program to increase access to credit for small businesses and nonprofits statewide.

Using funds received by the Hawai‘i Technology Development Corporation (HTDC) from the U.S. Treasury’s State Small Business Credit Initiative, the program will support the efforts of local financial institutions to lend funds to small businesses by reducing credit risk.

The Hawai‘i Green Infrastructure Authority (HGIA) will administrator the Hawai‘i Small Business Capital Program (HI-CAP) Collateral Support Program, designed to assist borrowers in obtaining financing that might otherwise be unavailable due to a collateral shortfall, by providing a credit enhancement in the form of cash collateral to participating lenders for eligible loans to eligible businesses and nonprofits.

“According to surveys conducted by our Research and Economic Analysis Division, some 60% of Hawai‘i businesses were closed during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Of that, 97.5% of these businesses had less than 100 employees which 76% had less than 10 employees,” said DBEDT Director Mike McCartney.  “While businesses have since either fully or partially re-opened, almost 2% of Hawai‘i’s businesses were permanently closed.  Helping small businesses access credit not only maintains jobs and supports Hawai‘i’s workforce, but it is also critical for creating new jobs and strengthening Hawai‘i’s economy.”

“We look forward to working with financial institutions statewide to enroll in the HI-CAP Collateral Program to facilitate lending to their small business clients recovering from the pandemic, growing their business and diversifying our economy,” said Gwen Yamamoto Lau, HGIA executive director.

HTDC and HGIA are partnering with local financial institutions to offer this program.  For more information, please email [email protected] or visit https://gems.hawaii.gov/hawaii-small-business-capital-program-hi-cap/hi-cap-collateral/