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Startup Company Cofounded by CNM’s Deep Dive Coding Graduate Wins $200,000 in National Competition

September 29, 2016 -- HoneyMoon Brewery, a startup cofounded by CNM STEMulus Center’s Deep Dive Coding Bootcamp graduate James Hill, won $200,000 this week as the grand prize winner in the nationwide 2016 Miller Lite Tap the Future competition.
Startup Company Cofounded by CNM’s Deep Dive Coding Graduate Wins $200,000 in National Competition

Sep 29, 2016

Hill is co-founder of Santa Fe-based HoneyMoon Brewery, which produces a healthier alternative to traditional beer. The brewery took home the $200,000 grand prize, following two rounds of rigorous live business pitching. Among the judges for the competition was business mogul Daymond John from ABC’s “Shark Tank.”

Now in its fourth year, Tap the Future is a business plan competition that offers entrepreneurs a chance to grow their businesses.

Thirty semifinalists were chosen from a pool of over 13,000 applicants for a chance to impress John and other judges at live pitch events all over the country. Each of the six winning finalists from the first round received $20,000 and a chance at the grand prize of $200,000. 

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"Winning the Miller Lite Tap the Future competition is a tremendous honor," said Ayla Bystrom-Williams, founder and CEO of Honeymoon Brewery. "From the very beginning we knew that we had a product that could be revolutionary, it just took the work and dedication of our team to show the judges the same thing. The exposure from this competition, as well as the prize money will go a long way in getting us to the next level. And more importantly the business knowledge we gained from the judges has given us insight on how to improve our brand, and sustain it for years to come. We're extremely thankful to Miller Lite for the opportunity and applaud the company for empowering entrepreneurs through Tap the Future."

Hill built HoneyMoon Brewery’s website after graduating from CNM’s Deep Dive Coding, a 10-week (40-plus hours per week) web development bootcamp taught at the CNM STEMulus Center in downtown Albuquerque. Students learn the fundamentals of modern web development and coding to build websites, software and apps.

John Mierzwa, founder of Deep Dive Coding bootcamp and Director of STEMulus Initiatives with CNM, said students are encouraged to start their own business after graduation. “Whether they plan to be an entrepreneur or eventually go to work for someone else, the skills our students learn in Deep Dive Coding will be useful to them forever. We’re so proud of James and Ayla and wish them continued success.”