Ryerson MBA student team is the first Canadian team to take the top prize and win the People’s Choice Award in the international competition hosted by The Economist’s Which MBA? Division
TORONTO, March 3, 2016 — If you were to choose between two retailing giants to invest in, Amazon or Walmart, which would you choose and why? That was the question posed to some of the brightest MBA minds worldwide in an international case study challenge — a competition where the Ryerson University’s MBA team took both first place and the People’s Choice Award.
“This win continues our MBA’s meteoric trajectory and momentum – in just 10 short years, we have become a globally ranked MBA program and force to be reckoned with in international competitions,” said Dean Steven Murphy, Ted Rogers School of Management.
Hosted by The Economist’s Which MBA? division, the 2nd annual MBA competition sponsored by video-on-demand channel Real Vision began last fall with 31 MBA teams competing from across U.S., the UK and Brazil. The Ryerson MBA team was the only Canadian entry. Each team submitted a short video giving an in-depth analysis of a case study with a seemingly simple business question: if they had to choose between two leading retailers – Amazon or Walmart – to invest in over 10 years, which one would they choose and how would they structure their investment?
The Ryerson MBA student team, Jesse Berger, Krysten Connely and Saad Rahman, took first place – and $10,000 in prize money – for their unique investment solution. Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey, California, came in second winning $5,000 while the Marriott School of Management in Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, took third place, winning $3,000.
The Ryerson team also claimed the People’s Choice Award, worth $3,000, which was based on the most number of votes received from the general public.
“This is an amazing win for our MBA students,” said Dale Carl, director of graduate students for the Ryerson MBA program and the students’ academic advisor. “The unique hybrid approach of our program — combining a strong academic foundation with experiential learning – clearly helped these students in building a creative, innovative business plan that set them apart from the competition.”
Raoul Pal and Grant Williams, co-founders of the Real Vision investment channel and judges of the competition, announced the winners in a video released on the competition’s website this week. They commented on how the Ryerson team thought “out of the box” when they chose to invest in both companies by recommending an investment portfolio that both minimizes risk and captures growth over a 10-year period, a move they called “genius.”
“This extensive case was a true testament to our persistence and ability to join forces as a team under pressure,” said Connely, who is completing her MBA and is a marketing and communications manager at the DMZ at Ryerson University. “Our strongest asset was our diversity of thought and skills – a perfect mix of strong investment savvy, critical thinking, creativity and research expertise. It was an extremely fulfilling experience.”