The Competition

Located in the heart of HOST Park Research Campus in Kona, Hawaii, Hale Iako is a new business incubator facility offering modern office space to start-ups and growing businesses. For more information, visit:

The competition will be staged in Kona at the brand new Incubator Facility called Hale Iako at the Natural Energy Lab (

It will consist of a 3-round process requiring competence in 3 vital business plan formats.

Entrants will be encouraged to enroll in UHH’s Small Business Development Center’s Business Planning workshops to gain knowledge in business planning.

Entry requires completion of the registration form, payment of $100 to HICC, and submission of a 7-page written business plan based on our outline (download here) by the Sept 10th deadline.

Judges feedback in each round will help improve the quality of the competing plans selected to advance to the next round:

Round 1: The best-written plans will advance to round 2.
Round 2: Each team will present a 15-minute oral presentation of their plan. The best oral plans will advance to the finals.
Round 3: In the finals, each team will be judged on a combined score of three items: Revised 7-page business plan, 15-minute presentation of the business plan and 2-minute “elevator pitch” of the plan.

The team with the highest combined total score in the finals will be the winner.   Judges for the finals competition will be invited professionals with expertise in evaluating business plans such as VCs (venture capitalists).  Invited finals’ judges will be people who could invest in business plans if deemed feasible.


A grand prize of $25,000 in seed money will be awarded to the winning plan, and a special category has been added this year for the best business plan cultivated by students at UH-Hilo and Hawaii Community College.



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