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A bureau within the U.S. Department of Commerce
OIE Background

Office of Innovation and
Entrepreneurship (OIE)

University of Hawaii System


Honolulu, Hawaii

Project Name

XLR8UH Hawaii Innovation Ecosystem Development Project



Award Amount

$500,000 for XLR8UH Hawaii Innovation Ecosystem Development Project

The University of Hawai‘i (UH) is the major public institution of higher education and research discoveries in the State of Hawai‘i. UH annually brings in hundreds of millions in research dollars across a myriad of scientific areas, creating opportunities to generate cutting edge discoveries and intellectual property (IP) that has great potential economic value as well as important societal benefits.

Formed as a public-private partnership initiative between the University of Hawai‘i and Sultan Ventures, XLR8UH educates, mentors, and invests in UH’s world-class research and talent, with founders ranging from students to post docs, faculty, and alumni. XLR8UH is a first-of-its-kind venture accelerator, revolutionizing the way innovation is commercialized at universities.

Working in partnership with regional and national expertise, including VCs, angel investors, and the Hawaii business community, the University of Hawai‘i and XLR8UH is committed to building a thriving research enterprise in Hawai‘i that will develop a third major economic sector for the state, create high-quality living-wage jobs, and address the challenges and opportunities that face our communities.

With the EDA i6 Challenge, XLR8UH will expand its multiple award-winning year-old program statewide. Endeavors are aimed at further developing the pathway from entrepreneurship education to startup success. Specifically, XLR8UH will focus on commercialization of unique, regionally generated innovation, increase connectivity in the startup community via showcase events, provide technical assistance to teams with topic relevant workshops, and mentor talented entrepreneurs.