Three companies were among the first group of businesses to receive funding to manufacture personal protective equipment (PPE) under a program administered by the Hawai‘i Technology Development Corporation (HTDC) and the Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism (DBEDT). Over $1 million in grants were awarded to Hawai‘i small businesses to help establish a local supply chain of cleaning supplies and PPE in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency. Awards can range between $10,000 to $500,000, with larger awards possible if determined necessary by HTDC. The program was appropriated $10 million of federal CARES Act funds by the Hawai‘i State legislature.
The PPE Supply Chain program provides grants to Hawai‘i small businesses with 50 employees or fewer. The main goal of this program is to increase the local capacity for producing cleaning supplies and PPE to help keep Hawai‘i safe. The program also has equally important secondary objectives of providing economic support for Hawai‘i’s struggling small businesses and supporting businesses that provide job opportunities for displaced workers. Additionally, HTDC’s priority is to advance innovative solutions related to the PPE supply chain. The participant must be producing or plan to produce PPE/Cleaning Supplies commonly procured by the State through the Hawai‘i Emergency Management Agency (Hi-EMA).
“We’re trying to keep people safe and accelerate the economic recovery. If we can start producing our own supplies to meet the local demand, the jobs stay in Hawai‘i and the money circulates in the local economy,” said Mike McCartney, director of DBEDT.
COVID-19 has Hawai‘i facing serious economic challenges, leading many local businesses to find creative ways to navigate the new economy. The PPE Supply Chain program is providing important financial relief for small businesses impacted by ongoing shutdowns and increasing the local capacity for producing much needed supplies which will be crucial to the state’s recovery. The program aims to ramp up local manufacturing capacity to ensure COVID-19 safety supplies are available for the community while keeping the money circulating in the local economy.
Online applications are being accepted now through HTDC’s website at www.htdc.org. Completed applications are due no later than October 26, 2020. Applicants are encouraged to submit their applications as early as possible. Submitted applications are being reviewed as they are received with awardees announced on a weekly basis. Applicants can view a previously recorded online info session and access frequently asked questions on the HTDC website.
Contact PPE@htdc.org for additional assistance.
Companies awarded by the PPE Supply Chain program
$500,000 – Kamanu Composites, LLC, face shields
$236,797 – Lanikai Brewing Company LLC, hand sanitizer
$500,000 – Min Plastics & Supply, Inc., face shields