XLR8UH and Maui Food Innovation Center recieve national recognit - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

XLR8UH and Maui Food Innovation Center recieve national recognition

MAUI (HawaiiNewsNow) -

By Victoria Cuba

The U.S. Small Business Administration recognized XLR8UH and University of Hawaii Maui College’s Food Innovation Center as two of the nation’s elite programs on Wednesday.

The programs both received a $50,000 check during a ceremony held at the Daniel K. Inouye Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education Hale in UH Manoa. They were also recognized as winners of the annual SBA Growth Accelerator Fund Competition.

XLR8UH was recognized for its education, mentorship and investment in UH research and talent with students, faculty and alumni. The four-month program is the first of its kind proof of
concept center/venture accelerator was developed and managed by UH and boutique venture firm Sultan Ventures.
 
“This national recognition of our accelerator program by SBA, at just over a year old, confirms our belief in the abundance of opportunities that exist at the University of Hawai?i in all
disciplines,” said Omar. S. Sultan,  cofounder and managing director of XLR8UH and founding partner of Sultan Ventures.
 
With the recognition they received, XLR8UH will continue to report on the jobs created, funds raised and startups launched.

“By developing talented entrepreneurs from our ranks and fortifying the entrepreneurial ecosystem at UH we are also contributing to the
Hawai?i Innovation Initiative in its efforts to diversify the state’s economy,” said Vassilis L. Syrmos, UH vice president for research and innovation.
 
The Maui Food Innovation provides business and technological expertise to food and agricultural entrepreneurs throughout Hawaii. The center also helps increase profitability for farmers
and food manufacturers through new value-added food products, and contributes to sustainable island agriculture.
 
“We’re excited the project has been recognized nationally,” said UH Maui College Chancellor Lui K. Hokoana. “This additional award will increase learning opportunities for students.”
 
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