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DBEDT NEWS RELEASE: HTDC awarded $2.5 million to manage Hawaii’s manufacturing extension partnership center

Posted on Jan 24, 2017 in Latest Department News

Five-Year Funding from U.S. Dept. of Commerce Continues Successful Innovate Hawaii Program

HONOLULU – The High Technology Development Corporation (HTDC) has been awarded $2.5 million in federal funding by the U.S. Department of Commerce, National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program.

The funds will allow HTDC to continue to operate Hawaii’s MEP Center, called Innovate Hawaii, for the next five years. MEP centers support states’ small- and medium-sized manufacturers to enhance their productivity, growth, and technical performance.

“Our manufacturing industry plays an important role to grow and diversify our local economy,” said DBEDT Director Luis P. Salaveria. “We continue to focus on creating jobs by increasing exports to create a sustainable future.”

“Supporting our innovative local manufacturers through hands-on assistance and services strengthens Hawaii’s economy,” said Robbie Melton, executive director and CEO at HTDC. “This award enables us to further the MEP center’s mission and bolster our competitiveness.”

HTDC has managed the Innovate Hawaii program, since 2003. The program will receive $500,000 annually for the five-year period that begins on April 1, 2017.

“It’s incredibly rewarding to provide our islands’ manufacturers with opportunities to enhance their production through technology and mentorship,” adds Wayne Inouye, director of Innovative Hawaii. “Our Innovate Hawaii companies run the gamut – from high-tech developers and coffee producers to bakeries and even fashion designers. We’re excited to see what the next five years will bring to grow manufacturing in Hawaii.”

MEP is a national system of centers located in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. Each center is a partnership between the federal government and a variety of public or private entities, including state, university, and nonprofit organizations.

About HTDC (High Technology Development Corporation)

HTDC is a state agency, attached to the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT).  HTDC’s mission is to facilitate the development and growth of Hawaii’s high technology industry.  HTDC is providing the capital, building the infrastructure and developing the talent to foster innovation and diversify Hawaii’s economy. HTDC’s 80/80 Initiative is to create 80,000 new tech and innovation jobs that will provide high paying jobs for Hawaii residents.

ABOUT DBEDT (Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism)
DBEDT is Hawaii’s resource center for economic and statistical data, business development opportunities, energy and conservation information, and foreign trade advantages. DBEDT’s mission is to achieve a Hawaii economy that embraces innovation and is globally competitive, dynamic and productive, providing opportunities for all Hawaii’s citizens. Through its attached agencies, the department fosters planned community development, creates affordable workforce housing units in high-quality living environments, and promotes innovation sector job growth.

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Media Contacts: 

Robbie Melton
High Technology Development Corporation
Office: (808) 539-3615
Email: [email protected]

Christine Hirasa 
Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism
Phone: (808) 587-9006
Mobile: (808) 286-9017
Email: [email protected]

Jocelyn Collado or Susan Wright
Becker Communications, Inc.
Phone: (808) 533-4165
Email: [email protected] or [email protected]