University of Southern California

USC Marshall Team Places First in Asian Business Case Competition
The Four-Day Event and Competition Attracted Schools Worldwide
October 24, 2008 • by News at Marshall

Four undergraduate students from the USC Marshall School of Business placed first at the Asian Business Case Competition at Nanyang Technological University's Business School in Singapore on Oct. 16.

The four-day event and competition, created by Business Solutions, a case-focused student club at Nanyang Business School, attracted student teams from ten schools from Asia, Europe, Australia, New Zealand and the U.S. who gathered to tackle a strategic business problem for Aitken Spence Hotel Holdings PLC., a Sri-Lanka-based hotel and resort company. The competition is in its second year.

USC students Suzy Ryoo ('09), Michael Cochran ('09), Noah Auerhahn ('09) and Shaun Sakhrani ('10) had 40 hours to research, analyze, strategize and recommend growth strategies with an emphasis on sustainable tourism for a panel of six executives from KPMG, Deloitte, Schroder & Co., Singapore Exchange, Boston Consulting Group, and Microsoft.

The Marshall team focused on India as a key growth market for Aitken Spence over such markets as Bhutan and Thailand based on factors including political and economic stability.

The students, who are used to case competitions that allow for much less time to create presentations used their experience as part of their winning strategy, "We prepared as though it was a 24-hour case and used the extra time to make sure we'd thought about any potential problems in our strategy," said Suzy Ryoo, who also won the competition’s Best Speaker award.

The team competed against two other top schools in the finals, besting students from Thammasat University in Thailand and Aukland University in New Zealand. In the grand finals round, the students gave their presentation to executives from Microsoft, Singapore Exchange, UBS, Boston Consulting Group and Furama Hotel Corporation.

"I'm so proud of our team," said Naomi Warren, a Marshall professor of management communication who accompanied the team to Singapore. "Their presentation was polished and thorough, they used sound logic and their teamwork showed through every step of the way."

About the USC Marshall School of Business
Consistently ranked among the nation's premier schools, USC Marshall is internationally recognized for its emphasis on entrepreneurship and innovation, social responsibility and path-breaking research. Located in the heart of Los Angeles, one of the world's leading business centers and the U.S. gateway to the Pacific Rim, Marshall offers its 5,700-plus undergraduate and graduate students a unique world view and impressive global experiential opportunities. With an alumni community spanning 123 countries, USC Marshall students join a worldwide community of thought leaders who are redefining the way business works.