Maui Business

MEDB Announces Business Workshop: “Startup Weekend Maui Series”

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The Maui Economic Development Board announced the return of their “Startup Weekend Maui Series,” a series of workshops and events that help entrepreneurs jumpstart or fine-tune their existing business.

The Lead-up workshops are designed to help interested entrepreneurs come up with startup ideas in preparation for the “Startup Weekend.”  The workshops will be held on different days throughout October and November in anticipation of the “Startup Weekend,” which will be held on Nov. 16-18, 2018.

Participants engage in a workshop sponsored by the MEDB for “”Startup Weekend Maui”. PC: MEDB.

Startup Weekend and the Lead-up workshops will be held at MEDB’s Malcolm Center and the Maui Research Technology Center, both located in the Maui Research and Tech Park in Kīhei.

Meals are provided for all events.

Three lead-up events are offered to give participants valuable tools for their startup idea:

“Pinching your Pennies: Finance for Entrepreneurs” on Tuesday, Oct. 30

Focus is on how to run your business more profitably and avoid mistakes that cause businesses to fail. Led by Gerry Smith, MEDB’s Director of Business Development, attendees will learn valuable tips and tricks to ensure that whatever product or service they offer is profitable for your business.

“It’s a must-attend, especially if your business involves manufacturing,” said Smith. “People forget to pay themselves and often overlook substantial hidden costs.”

This workshop will address these important questions:

  • Are you covering ALL of your costs?
  • How much should your product sell for?
  • Should you offer your product Wholesale?
  • What is Break-Even Analysis?
  • What is cash flow and why is it so important?
  • What are fixed vs. variable costs?

Cost is $20 per person.

“Lean Startup Canvas” on Tuesday, Nov. 6

The lean startup business model canvas is an important tool that people can use to help bring clarity to the question, “How will my business succeed?” Learn about the canvas and immediately apply your knowledge in this hands-on workshop. Led by Sultan Ventures and XLR8HI, attendees will learn to:

  • Develop a new or existing business model
  • Outline your firm’s or product’s value proposition, customers, and finances
  • Align and evaluate your business activities by recognizing potential tradeoffs in a much easier and effective way

Cost is $20 per person.

“Pitch Bootcamp” on Tuesday, Nov. 13

In preparation for for “Startup Weekend”, attendees will receive helpful tips on crafting a strong 60-second pitch for their startup idea. Attendees will receive feedback from peers and mentors and hone their presentation skills.

Event is free.


“Startup Weekend” on Nov. 16-18

Throughout this weekend event, participants will experience the highs, lows, fun, and pressure that make up life at a startup. They will learn how to create a real company and meet mentors, investors, cofounders, and sponsors who are ready to help them get their company started. With the best tools and approaches at their disposal, they will take giant leaps in learning skills to create a business, work on a startup team, and connect with the right people and resources.

All Startup Weekend events follow the same basic model: On Friday starting at 6.30 p.m., anyone is welcome to pitch their startup idea and receive feedback from their peers. Teams form organically on the top ideas determined by popular vote and then engage in a weekend-long series of business model creation, coding, designing, and market validation. Coaches and mentors who have been successful in various areas of business will be available to provide feedback and guide the teams through the process.

The weekend culminates on Sunday, November 18 where presentations are given to local entrepreneurial leaders and potential investors who will provide a final opportunity for critical feedback. Winning teams receive a prize package of est. $1,000 value.

“At the Startup Weekend Series potential entrepreneurs can learn valuable skills, network with like-minded, motivated individuals, and achieve making a startup business concept a reality. The series provides a great opportunity to discover and nurture your own entrepreneurial spirit,” said Frank De Rego Jr., Director of Business Development Projects at MEDB “If you are an experienced entrepreneur, rediscover your passion and share your wisdom. If you are the least bit curious about what it takes to create a startup, come and join us. It won’t be easy, but it will be fun.”

Last year’s ideas included a digital smart lock; leadership program; a GPS-integrated wrist-ware for search and rescue operations; and Hawaii on-the-go baby food.

Erik Blair, an entrepreneur and startup weekend coach said, “It inspires me to see everybody coming forward with their ideas, trying to find ways to achieve their goals and then validating their business concepts. Everyone who participates in Startup Weekend Maui walks away a winner having gained something from this experience.”

For event details and to register for any or all of the Startup Weekend Maui Series, visit

Reservations are required for all events and space is limited.  Early bird and student rates are available for Startup Weekend.


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