Record Participation at the 2016 Russell Investments International Case Competition (RIICC)!!

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2016 Russell Investments International Case Competition Champions, Kim Perdue, Dennis Wong, Andrew Stearns, and Aarthi Ganapathi

Energy was in the air as groups of students filed into Paccar Hall early Saturday morning. They were dressed in their sharpest business attire and eager to share strategy recommendations with business community members. “On a Saturday Morning?!” you ask? Indeed.

On Saturday, November 5th, the Global Business Center at the Foster School of Business hosted the Russell Investments International Case Competition (RIICC). 2016 marked the 19th year that the Foster School has organized this signature introductory case competition. With Russell Investments as the new title sponsor, student interest was so overwhelming that organizers coordinated an additional competition room to satisfy demand. In total, 37 teams and, over 140 students participated!

After 48 hours of intensive analysis, teams impressed judges with their insightful examination of the 2016 case, Emirates Airline: Connecting the Unconnected (Harvard Business School, January 2014).

Student teams played the role of outside consultants, and presented their recommendations to a panel of community member judges, who played the role of top management at Emirates Airline. The teams were asked to 1) consider the current strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats for Emirates and 2) present recommendations as to which route expansions Emirates should pursue over the next five years.

The four top-scoring teams moved on to the final round. We would like to congratulate the four finalist teams:

Team 1 (A4): Rose Jao, Sheldon Spring, Ishani Ummat, Chris Cave

Team 2 (A2): Sabina Hsu, Preston Gulledge, Vincent Lawson, Patrick Ren

Team 3 (B4): Yue Yang (Ted) Chan, Tomoki Yamaguchi, Andrew Kiffe, Bianca Cheung

Team 4 (E1): Kim Perdue, Dennis Wong, Andrew Stearns, Aarthi Ganapathi

After watching the final round teams present, the panel of four finalist judges determined a winner. Of the four impressive finalist presentations, Team 4 took home the title of 2016 Russell Investments International Case Competition champions and $1,000. Team 1 took 2nd place and won a $500 prize.

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2016 Russell Investments International Case Competition Champions, Kim Perdue, Dennis Wong, Andrew Stearns, and Aarthi Ganapathi

Congratulations to all of the teams, especially to the first place team members, Kim Perdue, Dennis Wong, Andrew Stearns, Aarthi Ganapathi. A special recognition to Aarthi Ganapathi who was part of the 2015 Freshman Direct Track winning team and this year snagged the title of champion!!  The first place team recommended introducing a route to Chile, extending route service to Iceland, and increasing cargo routes in China.  The judges were impressed by their thoughtful and innovative solution.

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Aarthi Ganapathi presents strategy recommendations at the 2016 Russell Investments International Case Competition

Of the 37 teams that participated, nine of those were teams of Foster School Freshman Direct students. These teams competed in their own track of the competition to win the title of Freshman Direct Champion and $500. We are excited to see these students getting involved so early in their Foster careers. The Freshman Direct Track winning team was team F2: Yi Ren, Andrew Labaczewski, Karah Hsu, Katherine Eng. Second place in the Freshman Direct track was a direct tie between teams G1: Danielle Seaman, Peter Windus, Coleman Etringer, Lela Cooper and G4: Kimberly Bronstein, Josef Ravner, Jordan Todhunter, Madisen Mead.

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Russell Investments International Case Competition Freshman Direct Track Winning team Yi Ren, Andrew Labaczewski, Karah Hsu, Katherine Eng with Associate Dean Steve Sefcik.

The Global Business Center is committed to providing global business education across Washington State. For the second year, Washington State Community College students participated in the NW Regional Track of the competition. Teams were invited from Yakima Valley College, Highline College, and North Seattle College. Each team gave an impressive presentation, and North Seattle College took home the title of NW Regional Track Champions.

North Seattle College team, Isis Bordner, Christopher Alop, Justin Domingues, Jerome F. Cherry.

North Seattle College team, Isis Bordner, Christopher Alop, Justin Domingues, Jerome F. Cherry.

The Russell Investments International Case Competition is an introductory case competition and an exceptional learning experience for undergraduate students. It provides an opportunity for students who have never competed in a case competition to ‘get their feet wet’. This year’s learning opportunities included a ‘how to approach a case competition’ training session, taught by Foster School faculty member Leta Beard, and a coaching round which provided teams the opportunity to get feedback on their presentation from business community and faculty coaches before presenting in front of the judges panel. Thank you to all of our volunteers who made the event possible!

Visit our website to find out more and learn how to get involved next year.

The Global Business Center would like to thank Russell Investments for your partnership in equipping UW students to succeed in the global economy.