How CNM Ingenuity is Helping Forge the Future of Business on a Ski Lift

CNMI will be hosting the 8th Ski Lift Pitch on Feb. 23 where local startup founders ride the chairlift at Taos Ski Valley alongside investors and pitch their business ideas as part of a $10,000 winner-take-all competition
January 26, 2023

Having a strong pitch is essential for a startup. But where and how do you deliver that pitch in order to reach the right kind of investors who can fund your business?

CNM Ingenuity and the Outdoor Recreation Division of the New Mexico Economic Development Department think the chairlift at Taos Ski Valley is the perfect spot. Coming up on Feb. 23, 12 local pre-seed and seed-stage startups headquartered in or with presence in New Mexico will be participating in the 8th Ski Lift Pitch. The event pairs a founder of each startup with world-class venture capitalists who’ve gathered in Taos, and the duos jump on the lift for quick pitch sessions. 

Each startup founder gets to meet with four different VC representatives (four chairlift rides), and those VC reps judge each startup’s ideas. The top four startups then get to present their pitches to a larger group of VC reps down at the base area, and the winning startup walks away with $10,000.

But even more importantly, both the winning startup and all the startup participants get to forge important relationships with the attending VC companies. Those relationships then pay off over time as the startups mature and continue to look for funding opportunities. 

“This year, we have an amazing group of New Mexico startups, as well as several new investors coming to New Mexico for the very first time,” says T.J. Cook, who sits on the event’s organizing committee and serves as the Fund Manager for the Ingenuity Venture Fund. “It’s all about connecting these startups to capital and showcasing New Mexico as an entrepreneurial state.” 

This year, the 12 startups chosen to participate are:

Space Kinetic—Creators of electromechanical technology that moves resources through space, creating multiple new capabilities for the U.S. military.  

Faena—Developers of a Spanish-language learning video game that provides immersive, experiential, and social solutions to take learners to fluency.

AllerPops—A substitute for current allergy medicines that only treat symptoms, AllerPops all-natural supplements correct the cause of allergies with no side effects.

T-Neuro Pharma—Developers of a blood-based diagnostic for Alzheimer’s disease that can identify patients earlier and for less cost.

Biteline—A software company solving the temporary staffing issues with dental offices through its speed of job placement and low subscription fee.

Both&—The first apparel company to build a data-backed proprietary fit and sizing system for transmasculine and nonbinary-identified people.

CareVid—A software platform that bridges the gap between healthcare providers and patients with user/patient-generated video content.

NeuroGeneces—Applying cutting-edge neuroscience, sleep expertise, and AI to provide brain health assessments to enhance cognitive healthspan.

Rhea Space Activity, Inc.—Developers of a GPS-denied celestial navigation product for military and commercial aerospace customers.

Circular Genomics—Bringing precision medicine to mental health diagnostics through the use of circular RNAs as novel and accurate biomarkers.

GILZ LLC—Clean helmet technology solving for air pollutants and visor fogging for motorcyclists, firefighters, and first-responders.

VastVision Technologies—Developers of real-time tracking and asset management solutions using its innovative UHF RFID software platform. 

Day-of tickets for the Ski Lift Pitch event are available to members of the public, with discounted tickets available for students at