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Hawaii Small Business Loans: Best Local and Online Options

Financial analysis has shown that Hawaii is one of the best places for small business owners to start and grow their companies. Profiling of Hawaii in 2017 showed that there were approximately 127,000 small businesses in the island state, a number that makes up around 99% of all businesses based in...

Hawaii Small Business Loans
Tetiana Sitiugina-Babiuk
Financial Sector Specialist and Content Strategist

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Hawaii is the largest island chain globally and is the only U.S. state wholly made up of islands. Statistics show that small businesses were responsible for employing roughly 267,800 people in Hawaii in 2017. Furthermore, small business loans totaling 23,079 — for under $100,000 (valued at $330.3 million) — were issued by Hawaii lending institutions according to these stats (Source: FFIEC).

Top Three Hawaii Small Business Loan Options

Below, we are going to take a look at several banks and credit unions offering small business loans to Hawaii-based companies.

Bank of Hawaii

Bank of Hawaii is a Small Business Administration (SBA) preferred lender, which means that the application process for government-backed SBA loans through the bank can be easier, and the approval times - faster. These SBA loans are suitable for both new and established small businesses and have long repayment terms, designed specifically to accommodate longer-term financing needs of small businesses.

Bank of Hawaii also offers business term loans with 1- to 5-year repayment terms, which can be customized to fit any situation and business needs. Whether you need to expand into new growth opportunities, are looking to finance new expenditures, or are struggling to meet your budget for operating expenses, Bank of Hawaii will find a suitable option for you.

HawaiiUSA Federal Credit Union

HawaiiUSA Federal Credit Union

HawaiiUSA Federal Credit Union is SBA affiliated and strives to find the loan option to best suit your needs. They offer SBA loans, business auto loans, business loans, and lines of credit. Capable business lenders in their employ will analyze your options and find the best possible loan rate for your business. Terms will vary for each loan.

An example of loan options available would be the SBA 504 Loan Program which provides long-term, fixed-rate financing of up to $5 million for large-scale fixed assets that will promote business growth and job creation. No investment property financing is allowed.

Ohana Pacific Bank

Headquartered in Honolulu, Ohana Pacific Bank offers business checking, savings, and money market accounts together with the following loan products:

  • SBA loans, comprising SBA 7(a) loans, SBA 504 loans, and SBA Express loans, all of which are government-guaranteed.
  • Commercial Term Loans and Lines of Credit. These are available for additional working capital, short-term seasonal financing, emergency cash reserves, carrying account receivables, or purchasing inventory. The bank also offers a variety of secured and unsecured term loans designed to help your business grow.
  • Commercial real estate loans and lines of credit. Commercial real estate loans and lines of credit are available for financing the purchase of various commercial real estate properties.
  • Construction loans. Construction loans are on offer for new land development or improvements on an existing commercial property.
  • Professional loans and lines of credit.

Ohana Pacific Bank also offers its lending products to professionals such as doctors, dentists, and accountants, to name a few. These products cater to things like purchasing equipment, expanding your offices, or increasing your working capital levels.

Summary Table



Bank of Hawaii


  • SBA preferred lender
  • Offers SBA loans and business term loans

HawaiiUSA Federal Credit Union


  • SBA-affiliated
  • Offers SBA loans, business term loans and lines of credit, and more

Ohana Pacific Bank


  • Offers a variety of loan products, including unsecured loans

Top Online Hawaii Small Business Loan Options

Going the regular banking route when applying for credit can be somewhat frustrating and time-consuming. This is because, generally speaking, you will need to provide a bank with a large amount of documentation, and it will take an extended amount of time before you receive an outcome.

Banks are usually also stricter on personal credit scores, so it might be worth considering an online small business loan. These lenders provide quick outcomes and are more relaxed on credit score requirements. We’ll name and discuss some of them here.

1. Fora Financial

Offering small business loans to Hawaii-based companies since 2008, Fora Financial presents a reliable and trusted fintech lender providing fast and convenient online loan options.

The company offers two main types of financing to small businesses in a variety of industries: merchant cash advances and short-term loans. With both options, the loan amounts can vary between $5,000 and $500,000. The application approval generally takes 24 hours or less, and the fund disbursement takes no longer than three business days.

In order to qualify for a loan with Fora Financial, you need to make sure that your business has been in operation for at least six months and has an annual revenue of at least $12,000. In addition, it is important that you do not have any open or unsettled bankruptcies, and your personal credit score is at least 500.

If you meet the application requirements, you can fill out an easy online application form, upload supporting documents, and wait for the funding decision.

2. BlueVine

BlueVine offers invoice factoring credit lines of up to $5 million and revolving business credit lines of up to $250,000.

Minimum requirements for the above products are:

  • 530+ credit score
  • Be in business 3+ months
  • Monthly revenue of $10,000
  • That your company is B2B

During the application, BlueVine will ask for some information on your business, details regarding your invoices, bank connection, or bank statements from your last three months in business.

Nevertheless, BlueVine’s online application process is incredibly simple, with funds made available in a matter of days or even hours. In addition, even though the lender operates online, in-person customer support is available to help guide you through the process.

3. Fundbox

Fundbox is another convenient online lending platform known for its quick application process, fast approval times, and fairly lenient credit score requirements of only 600.

Fundbox offers business term loans and revolving lines of credit up to $150,000. Features are as follows:

Term loan:

  • Get a once-off loan up to your approved limit
  • If eligible, you can take an additional term loan without reapplying
  • Choice of a 24- or 52-week repayment plan
  • Pay no origination fee and repay early without penalty fees

Line of credit:

  • Revolves, so funds are withdrawable as needed without reapplying
  • Choice of a 12- or 24-week repayment plan with every draw
  • Pay no origination fee and repay early without penalty fees
  • An excellent bridging finance tool

When applying for a loan from Fundbox, you can expect a fairly straightforward application process: simply fill out some basic information, connect your business checking account or accounting software, and wait for the approval decision.

4. Torro

Rather than providing small business loans itself, Torro presents an online lending marketplace. This means that the company works to connect small business owners directly with their network of lenders, private investors, and independent brokerages.

The main loan products offered by Torro are merchant cash advances and business lines of credit. Even though term lengths and interest rates can vary according to the specific lender you obtain a loan from, the company does specify the maximum amounts for these two types of loans. As such, you can receive a business line of credit of up to $250,000 and a merchant cash advance of up to $750,000, which is one of the highest limits on the market.

Additional Hawaii Small Business Resources

In addition to financial support, the state of Hawaii offers a broad range of non-financial resources for local small businesses:

Hawaii Business Development and Support Division

The Hawaii Business Development and Support Division provides a handy list of resources related to Covid-19 small business support. This includes federal resources for U.S. small businesses, information on the Small Business Administration program, and more.

First Nations Development Institute Grant

First Nations has a grant-making scheme for native Hawaiian communities, which provides them with financial and specialized resources. The program is dedicated to the development of projects and businesses for these communities by providing important financial and technical resources. As such, through mid-year 2021, the organization has successfully managed 2,276 grants, valued at $46 million, issued to Native American organizations and projects around the country.

Hawaii SCORE

The Hawaii chapter of SCORE provides mentorship and education to both soon-to-be entrepreneurs and existing small business owners.

SCORE volunteers are highly-experienced industry professionals willing to share their expertise and business advice through confidential, one-on-one mentorship sessions. In addition, SCORE regularly holds small business workshops on a range of business topics, including finance and accounting, marketing, management, and more.

Hawaii Small Business Development Center (SBDC)

Hawaii SBDC is dedicated to enhancing the economic well-being of Hawaii by providing important support to local small businesses.

The organization offers business advice, in-depth analysis, and business plan development support necessary for entrepreneurs to start and grow a successful business. In addition, SBDC regularly conducts workshops and seminars on business-related topics, such as marketing, bookkeeping, strategic planning, sales, business valuation, and more.

Oauhu Online Business Meetup

Oauhu Online Business Meetup is a networking organization with over 850 members that virtually meet on a monthly basis. The group is open to owners of offline and online small businesses looking to further advance their web presence through online marketing, web design, social media, and search engine optimization.

How to Prepare for a Hawaii Small Business Loan

You must attend to the following before proceeding with your Hawaii small business loan application:

  • Business bank account.You should have a business bank account. Should you be approaching a different bank for a loan, have at least three months of your existing bank statements available.
  • Credit score. Check and improve it if possible. You can do so by checking and correcting any mistakes on your credit report, paying off outstanding balances, and keeping your credit balances low at all times.
  • Business registration. Ensure that your papers and licenses are in order.
  • Business plan. Have your latest business plan in hand. It should include an executive summary, the description of your company, a detailed market analysis, the description of your service or product line, marketing strategy, and financial projections.
  • Business revenues. Try to highlight all positive revenues to catch the eye of the credit assessor.
  • The Bottom Line

    When it comes down to small business operations and funding, there’s no shortage of assistance and options in the state of Hawaii. From small business loans from Hawaii-based conventional lenders and online financing options, to government grants and educational assistance programs, you will surely find the support you need to successfully establish and grow your small business.

    About the Author

    Tetiana Sitiugina-Babiuk

    Tetiana Sitiugina-Babiuk

    Financial Sector Specialist and Content Strategist

    Independent writer, content strategist, and financial sector specialist. Tatiana has an extensive experience in working with financial institutions such as Bank of Canada and Risk Management unit at FinDev Canada. She holds an MA in Financial Risk Management from the University of Toronto.

    More about me

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