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Hawaii District Office

Success Stories

Success Stories

Louis Perez III, Akamai Capital Inc., 2014 Small Business Advocate for Financial Services, State of Hawaii

Louis Perez III is the managing director for Akamai Capital Inc., a subsidiary of the Akamai Foundation that furthers community economic development and business training. He is a frequent speaker, trainer and panelist for entrepreneurial programs such as the SBA Emerging Leaders Initiative and the Community Development Venture Capital Fund. He's provided briefings for the State legislature, the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, the White House Initiative of Asian American and Pacific Islanders, the Ford Foundation and the Native Hawaiian Convention on investment capital, community lending, and topics impacting local groups.

In 2014, representing Akamai Capital, Louis Perez III won the SBA Small Business Advocate for Financial Services, State of Hawaii. He was nominated by Naomi Masuno, Bank of Hawaii.

Pictured: Louis Perez III

Robert Barrett, President, Coastal Windows Inc.

Started in 1990 to provide the Hawaiian Islands with a complete line of windows and doors designed and manufactured locally, Coastal Windows Inc., offers a broad line of vinyl products specifically for the tropical market. The company serves home and condo renovations and new construction, commercial and government projects. 

Guided by Robert Barrett’s entrepreneurial instincts and savvy use of resources - including an SBA loan - Coastal Windows Inc. has survived challenging economic times. The company has grown into a 30,000 sq. ft. facility that include offices, sales and production space; revenues have increased by 22% over the last two years, and employees have increased in number to 53.

In 2014, representing Coastal Windows, Inc., Robert Barrett won the SBA Small Business Person of the Year for the City and County of Honolulu. He was nominated by Gregory Sitar, First Hawaiian Bank.

Pictured: Robert Barrett

Wendy and Jingbo Chang, Pacific Commercial Services LLC (PCS)

Founded in 2001 by Wendy and Jingbo Chang, Pacific Commercial Services LLC (PCS) specializes in Hazardous, Toxic and Radioactive Waste (HTRW) management, contaminated site remediation and restoration, environmental construction, industrial and marine cleaning and preservation, and military facility support. The firm has steadily expanded, and now boasts well over 100 years of combined employee experience in the environmental industry.

In 2002, Pacific Commercial Services LLC was certified by the Small Business Administration as 8(a) Business Development and HUBZone Program participants (since exited), further expanding its market reach; in 2005, the firm received SBA’s Award for Excellence in Contracting; in 2012, Wendy Chang participated in the SBA’s Emerging Leaders Initiative, a training program that focuses on executives of businesses poised for growth in historically challenged communities; and in 2014, Wendy and Jingbo Chang, representing the firm, were again... Read More

Matias Besasso and Brad Albert, Rising Sun Solar Electric LLC

Established by Matias Besasso and Brad Albert in 2003, Rising Sun Solar Electric LLC specializes in the design, sale, financing and installation of solar electric systems. The company has played a pivotal role in clean energy independence, education and social change here in Hawaii. Installing more PV systems than any other contractor on Maui, the output from Rising Sun Solar Electric LLC’s systems represent 35% of the island’s power generation.

Working with the Hawaii SBDC Network, the partners acquired SBA financing to enable the company to grow, negotiate favorable pricing, and offer the best customized options to customers. Their first SBA loan was used for working capital and with continued growth, their need for additional capital was met with a $100,000 SBA loan through the ARRA provisions. Driven by the fundamental belief that the environmental and economic benefits of their services could be profound locally and globally, the partners developed the small home-based... Read More