March 28, 2008
HEC Montréal is bringing home the gold, winning first place in the finals of the National University of Singapore (NUS) Global Business Challenge, held on March 28. Over 450 teams from 5 continents took part in this year’s event, the largest master’s-level competition in the world. The team members, students in the intensive MBA program, includes Fabio Carriero, Montu Gupta, Mauricio Idarraga and Rani Salman. They will share prize money of SGD$10,000 (approximately CAN$7,400).
“This has been an extraordinary experience for our MBA students,” said Jean Talbot, HEC Montréal’s MBA Program Director. “We are extremely proud of our team members, who have invested a considerable amount of time and effort in this competition, while pursuing their full-time MBA studies. Their hard work and the success they have garnered so far is a tribute to our program’s calibre and relevance. Our constant focus on innovation, in addition to the efforts our professors make to respond to this concern, enables us to offer a program that truly prepares students for today’s challenging business world.”
After competing in three elimination rounds, the School's team went head-to-head with the University of Hong Kong team in the semi-finals, held March 27, and competed with NUS Business School (second place), McGill University and London Business School in the final round on March 28. The four finalist teams were given a so-called “twister,” unexpected circumstances that needed to be incorporated into their business plans. They then made their final presentations, incorporating the “twister,” in front of a panel of judges from the business and academic worlds.
The School's team has been working on an innovative business plan for Brewerkz Restaurant & Microbrewery, Singapore’s award-winning microbrewery restaurant, since the beginning of the competition in late November 2007.
Ari Van Assche, Associate Professor of the Department of International Business, and Mouloud Khelif, Lecturer and PhD candidate, have coached and worked closely with the team over the past few months. This was the second time HEC Montréal had reached the finals in the NUS competition, as the 2006 team finished in third place.
First row: Rani Salman, Mauricio Idarraga and Montu Gupta; second row: Mouloud Khelif and Ari Van Assche (coachs), and Fabio Carriero