November 7, 2011
On November 11 and 12, at Ryerson University, a team of MBA students will be representing HEC Montréal at the Best in Class Invitational Case Competition organized by the Toronto chapter of Financial Executives International Canada (FEI Canada). Twelve teams from Canadian universities have been invited to participate in the sixth edition of this event.
The School’s team is made up of MBA students Simon Brown, Stuart Pattillo, Savvas Pilarinos and Nikola Vukov, with their coach, Bruno Delorme, an MBA program Lecturer. An HEC Montréal team won the competition in 2008, the first time that the School was invited to take part.
During the competition semi-finals, the 12 teams are given fictitious crisis situations occurring in an actual company. The identity of the case company is not revealed until the launch on Friday morning. They will first have to identify one or several strategic challenges. The competition focuses on all business functions, from marketing to human resources management, finance, logistics, social responsibility, etc., and participants must then present their recommendations integrating all these aspects, along with an action plan, to a panel of judges.
The four teams that make it into the final round are then given two hours to come up with a solution to a fictitious crisis in the same company. The top three teams earn prizes of $10,000, $5,000 and $2,500. The winning team will also be invited to take part in the national FEI Canada conference in June 2012, in St. John’s, Newfoundland, which is expected to draw about 500 participants.
FEI is a prestigious professional association for senior financial executives, with chapters in most large American and Canadian cities (approximately 15,000 members). The organization’s goals include professional networking, professional development and the sharing of useful information through presentations, lectures, etc. The Quebec chapter of FEI Canada, numbering over 200 members, is contributing to this competition with funding for the participating teams, from HEC Montréal and McGill University.
Quebec chapter members and other volunteers they have recruited are helping to coach the students. They are Carl Gauvreau, Vice-President, Finance and CFO, Hartco (also Chair of the Board of FEI Quebec); Pierre Galarneau, President, G.O. Management Services Inc.; André Paquin, Division Manager, Robert Half Management Resources; Réjean Moreau, Vice-President, Finance, Magnus Chemicals Ltd.; Robert St-Jean, Chief Financial and Administration Officer, Via Rail Canada; Bertrand Castonguay, Vice-President, Fruits & Passion; and Robert Conyers, consultant.
MBA Program Director Michael Wybo and Alix Mandron, Professor (Finance) and member of the Board of Directors of the Quebec chapter of FEI Canada, are also helping to prepare the students. In addition, the team has benefited from the experience of Alexandru Popovici (Manager, Finance, Lantheus Medical Imaging), a member of the winning HEC Montréal team in 2008, and Mouloud Khelif, coach of the 2010 team.
L'équipe de l'École : Savvas Pilarinos, Simon Edward Brown, Nikola Vukov et Stuart Pattillo.