Students Staff

15 March 2013

Essex Business School in grand final of national competition

Essex Business School team

Essex Business School Director Professor Michael Sherer with the team, from left to right, Li Peiyao, Hu Jiaxing, Georgi Dimitrov, team captain Craig Cumming and Kalina Georgieva

Business-savvy students from Essex Business School have won their way to the Grand Final of this year’s IBM Universities Business Challenge. The team hopeful of success as they are currently ranked first out of the 310 teams taking part in the competition.

The team includes team captain Craig Cumming, a second year Accounting and Finance student; Georgi Dimitrov, a second year Mathematics, Economics and Management student; Kalina Georgieva, a second year Management student; Jiaxing Hu, a second year Accounting and Finance student; and Peiyao Li, a third year Accounting and Finance student.

IBM Universities Business Challenge (UBC) is a national competition, involving undergraduate teams from universities across the UK. The competition requires student teams to complete a business simulation which tests core business skills such as marketing, finance, production and human resources. The competition also enhances students’ employability, not only by strengthening their CV, but introducing them to major sponsors and recruiters throughout the final rounds.

This year’s business simulation challenge involved running a hotel and the Essex team managed a five-star hotel in Thailand. In the first round, they had to create a business plan - deciding pricing strategy, staffing, wages and even refurbishment levels - to make a profit while maintaining customer satisfaction. Following rounds involved further decision-making, and testing each team’s ability in dealing proactively with problems that arise, such as inspections and staffing issues.

From the very first round, our team have received the highest profits, and they have maintained this lead throughout the competition. The team all agree their secret to success is great teamwork.

The IBM UBC Grand Final is Friday 22 March at IBM, on London’s South Bank. They will be competing with the other top nine university teams, including Leeds Metropolitan University and University of Liverpool.

Team captain Craig Cumming said: "The competition is a great opportunity to develop your business skills, and your business awareness, while having lots of fun”. Fellow team member Georgi Dimitrov added: “It’s a good opportunity to develop your interpersonal communication, problem-solving and decision-making skills.”

...more news releases