For the second year, the Center for Global Business at Maryland Smith, the Foster School of Business at the University of Washington, and the Florida International University’s Center for International Business Education and Research partnered to facilitate the Ace the Case Global Business Challenge. The second annual event offered business graduate students an opportunity to compete against their peers from across the country for a global client through a case interview and final video presentation.
Eleven teams from eight different schools competed, providing recommendations to Mexico-based ZeoMex, a company that manufactures Zeomedia (a filter media used in the water treatment industry and the agro-industry), for a market entry strategy in the United States and Canada. Teams were represented by Maryland Smith, Chapman, the Foster School, the Fox School of Business at Temple University, the College of Business Administration at Loyola Marymount University, the George Washington University School of Business, the Kogod School of Business at American University, and the University of Connecticut School of Business.
In the first round, teams were asked to create a set of recommendations that would combat three major expansion concerns – pricing of production and transportation, locating distributors, and implementing marketing efforts to future Zeomedia users. Teams presented their insights to a team of three judges in a case interview setting. Four teams then progressed to the final round where they presented a final market entry strategy for ZeoMex to enter the U.S. market.
Solving this challenge from a U.S. perspective was especially important for ZeoMex, said Leonardo Courtade, CEO of ZeoMex. “For us it was a great opportunity, we are very honored and happy to have the opportunity to collaborate and have the chance to receive [the teams] feedback and [the teams] knowledge about this venture we want to start. For us it was critical to have the view, the fresh view, of local people in the United States,” he said.
Kaamilah Fuqan, an LMU team member, said, “The skills we have developed such as critical thinking, and researching complex information and presenting that in a clear and concise way, as well as team-building and thinking on our feet, these are all very valuable transferable skills that we could apply to any of our careers.”
Team 4 from Loyola Marymount University won this year’s competition. The judges said they were impressed with LMU’s customized approach to the problem. “They had an excellent display of research applied to the case, particularly the assessment of competitors, business opportunities, and networking events was relevant and added a good level of customization to the presentation,” said HOFS Consulting’s Juan Velasco, one of the competition judges.
–This competition is funded in part by CIBE, a Title VI grant from the U.S. Department of Education. Maryland Smith, the University of Washington's Foster School of Business, and Florida International University are home to three of 15 Centers for International Business Education otherwise known as CIBE or CIBER, a Title VI grant administered by the U.S. Department of Education. The mission of the CIBE grant is to promote U.S. competitiveness in the global marketplace and to encourage international mutual understanding. Each of the partners expresses thanks to the U.S. Department of Education for their support in making the Ace the Case Global Business Challenge possible.
Media Relations Manager
About the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business
The Robert H. Smith School of Business is an internationally recognized leader in management education and research. One of 12 colleges and schools at the University of Maryland, College Park, the Smith School offers undergraduate, full-time and flex MBA, executive MBA, online MBA, business master’s, PhD and executive education programs, as well as outreach services to the corporate community. The school offers its degree, custom and certification programs in learning locations in North America and Asia.