Hawaiian Startup Ikehu Wins US Department of Energy Award for Technology Designed to Reduce Energy Consumption

Ikehu Natural LLC-180836

Hawaii Startup Ikehu Wins the US Department of Energy award for Technology Designed to Reduce Energy Consumption. The award was given for a technology called the Demand Response Incentive (DRIVE™) System. The DRIVE™ technology gives power companies the ability to offer airline miles to their energy efficient customers.

“Soon, consumers will have a new incentive to reduce energy consumption: free airline miles.”

“It’s an honor to be selected among the winners in such a prestigious competition”

– Holland Wood,Ikehu’s CEO and founder. Ikehu heads to DC later this summer to showcase the DRIVE app and meet the director of the DOE at an awards ceremony. Ikehu hopes that the award generates interest by power companies around the world.

What is does.

The DRIVE™ Mobile App and platform will utilize existing web and smartphone technologies so it can be deployed by virtually any power company.  This patent pending solution includes a mobile app and related web service that enables power companies to offer mileage-based incentives.

The U.S. Department of Energy evaluated contest entries based on several criteria including innovation, implementation and potential impact.  In all, 56 entrants competed for seven prizes.  The DRIVE™ Mobile App won the “Peak Energy Usage” award and received $6,000 in prize money.  In addition, the team is invited to showcase their technology at an upcoming recognition event in Washington, DC.

To be notified of when the DRIVE™ Mobile app will be available in your area, sign up at www.ikehu.com.


Ikehu Natural LLC is a Hawaii based startup that is focused on clean technology.  ‘Ikehu’ is the Hawaiian word for ‘energy’.  The company has a patent pending demand management system that is targeted towards residential customers.  The solution is called the Demand Response Incentive (DRIVE™) System.

Ikehu is a self-funded bootstrapped hosted demand reduction management service for utilities allowing them to provide designated rewards, in short a social energy management app for consumers.

Foreseeable competition include traditional demand reduction programs such as energy star rebates.

Moving forward Ikehu looks to build relationships with utilities, smart meter manufacturers and is open to green energy accelerator/incubator opportunities as well as angel/vc funding.


Holland Wood the business development and idea person. Rod Hindman holds a PHD in electrical engineering from MIT. Both Holland and Rod are responsible for the provisional patent. Matthew Ing the designer, and Derek Gabriel developer.

Hawaii is working to become an environment where technology startups can thrive, congratulations to the Ikehu Natural team and I look forward to their continued success.”  – Billy Kenoi, Mayor of Hawaii County


An award from the U.S. Department of Energy is validation that technology start-ups can launch in Hawaii. – Karl Fooks, President of the Hawaii Strategic Development Corporation

About the Apps for Energy Contest

The Apps for Energy Competition is an Energy Department contest aimed at encouraging private sector software developers, students, for-profit legal entities and/or non-profit organizations.  The contest fosters innovative applications (“apps”) that use Green Button data to help utility customers learn about their electricity use.  In total, $100,000 in prize money was awarded to seven winners. Winners receive a cash prize from DOE and are invited to Washington, D.C., to be honored at a recognition event and to demonstrate their apps.  For details and a complete list of winners, see