CUHK Business Students Won the
¡§The International Business Challenge¡¨ is a large-scale business case challenge for undergraduate students in the world. Started in 1995 by the Undergraduate Management Consulting Association, the competition was opened for universities in the U.S. and was then expanded to include top schools around the world since 1997. This year¡¦s participants are from top-tier universities including Indiana University, The University of British Columbia, The University of California ¡V Berkeley, The University of Southern California, The University of Texas at Austin, The University of Hong Kong and The University of Science and Technology. Students are requested to develop a marketing strategy for Netcast HD (a newly developed internet based entertainment network that delivers High Definition multi-media solution) to launch and capture a significant market share to sustain growth.
The winning team consists of four members from different concentration of studies with their own areas of expertise. During the competition, they recommended the company to adopt the ¡§Blue Ocean Strategy¡¨, a strategic management concept introduced by Professor W. Chan Kim and Professor Renˆme Mauborgne from Insead Business School. The essence of the strategy is, instead of mobilizing all resources to lift the siege against fierce competition with endless competitors in the existing market, a company may focus on developing innovative ideas to capture the uncontested market which has huge potential for development.
Chan Yeung Yun Grace, one of the team members said, ¡§We faced a panel of more than 10 judges comprising several experts from Dell, founders of Netcast HD and professors from the University of Texas at Austin. The case is about an industry and products (High definition video technology, online HD video downloads and storage) which are not that popular in Hong Kong. However, we were able to provide an in-depth analysis on the feasibility, profitability and substantiality of our plan and creative ideas supported by sound evidence. For instance, we suggested the company to form a strategic alliance with a surveillance company in our B2B business model. Judges were convinced by our ideas and were surprised by our ability to crack with this case which was unfamiliar to us. In the end, we out-performed other U.S. competitors who were more familiar with the case and the products.¡¨
The winning team believed that it was a very unusual and unforgettable competition, ¡§It was definitely a new challenge for every one of us as it was nothing similar to any of the presentations we have done in the past where the judges would patiently wait until we finish the presentation before criticizing our ideas. Instead, the presentation could be interrupted at any time by the judges, and they would ask us to explain any part with critical questions. This reminded us of the famous TV programme ¡§The Apprentice¡¨. We were pleased to manage to survive this challenge with our detailed analysis of the industry, creative ideas and strong teamwork eventually.¡¨
¡§The 20 participating teams were divided into 4 divisions with 5 universities in one division. We met the other universities from Hong Kong in the same division and won the division champion fortunately. We were excited but at the same time we also felt the pressure to represent Hong Kong to compete for the final round. It was an honour for us and a glory to Hong Kong and we were very grateful.¡¨
Prof. Raymond So, Associate Dean of the CUHK¡¦s Faculty of Business Administration and the Director of Undergraduate Studies are proud of the students¡¦ achievement, ¡§Our undergraduate programmes give great emphasis on equipping students with solid business knowledge and provide a wide range of programmes to train up students in every important aspects of business administration: Integrated BBA, Global Business Studies, Professional Accountancy, Hotel and Tourism Management, Quantitative Finance, Insurance, Financial and Actuarial Analysis. Our team consists of students from the Global Business Studies, Quantitative Finance, Marketing and General Finance and three of them have joined overseas exchange programmes with the University of Southern California, the University of Texas at Austin and Queen¡¦s University respectively, allowing them to have an idea of different cultures and business environment. This enables them to perform well in the competition and is crucial to their success.¡¨
¡§We organize the ¡§Academic Cup¡¨ which is an annual case analysis competition of our Faculty and aims at encouraging our students to treasure and experience the learning process in this kind of case competition. Apart from the training on how to apply classroom theories to real business cases, team members also learned how to cooperate with others, to encourage one another, to incorporate different opinions and to develop team spirit.¡¨