March 30, 2009

MBA Students Win Cash, Prestige In Sony Marketing Competition

A team of six MBA students from TCU, Kansas, Texas A&M, Notre Dame, Howard and Darden won first place and $6,000 in the second annual Neeley Sales & Marketing Strategy Competition , sponsored by Sony Electronics .

Sixty MBA students from 23 universities across the U.S. competed in randomly assigned teams of six in front of Sony Electronics executives who presented the case and acted as judges. In a unique twist on other business school case competitions, the students were given a potential Sony product to provide a strategy from conception to market, instead of an existing product.

Dennis McTighe, Senior Vice President of Sales for  Sony Electronics Western Zone, said: "This competition centered on a new product category and concept that has just emerged. The teams presented features, price points, design, functionality, and a targeted go-to-market strategy."

The winning team included: Yinghong Fu, Neeley School of Business at TCU; Jean Paul Michaud, University of Kansas School of Business;  Eric Bruns, Mays School of Business at Texas A&M; Balakrishnan Rangan, Mendoza College of Business at Notre Dame; Ernest G. Talbert III, Howard University School of Business; and Kristen Karas, Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia.

Second place and $4,000 went to: Thuy Vu,   Neeley School of Business  at TCU; Kevin Shtofman, Cox School of Business at SMU; Kern Chen, Yale School of Management; Tanyarat Charatchawengpong, Krannert School of Management at Purdue; Ryan Jensen, Terry College of Business at the University of Georgia; and Raef Wyatt, Hankamer School of Business at Baylor.

Third place and $2,000 went to: Vanessa Brownlee, Neeley School of Business at TCU; Abe Chu, Jones Graduate School of Management at Rice;  Rohit Taneja, Kelley School of Business at Indiana; Regina Gwynn, Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern; Chris Engelbrecht, Krannert School of Management at Purdue; and Gustavo Perez, Mays School of Business at Texas A&M.

The competition took place Saturday, March 28, at the Neeley School. MBA students represented TCU, SMU, Texas A&M, Rice, Baylor, Yale, Purdue, Darden, Drucker, Emory, Eller/Arizona, Pepperdine, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Wharton, Howard, Indiana, Northwestern, Alabama, Kansas, Notre Dame, Vanderbilt, Missouri and Florida. Sony Judges included: Jay Vandenbree, President, Sony Consumer Sales; Steve Haber, Senior VP Marketing, Digital Imaging and Audio Division; Steve Tate, Senior VP Strategic Sales, Planning; Ken Stevens, Senior VP Central Zone; Paul Spitale, Senior VP Eastern Zone; and Dennis McTighe, Senior VP Western Zone.

"We were please to host this case competition again this year with Sony, because it allows MBA students to apply what they have learned in class, utilize their own skills and experience, network with key Sony executives, and work alongside other MBA students from different schools. It is a real business-world experience," said Ed Reifenstahl, director of experiential learning at the Neeley School of Business.

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The nationally ranked Neeley School of Business at TCU focuses on personal development, vital connections and real experiences. High functioning classrooms and calculated career development give students the platform to succeed. Renowned faculty, major corporations and leading executives connect to share winning business practices. Students work for real clients to solve critical challenges. Neeley is consistently recognized among the best business schools in the country by The Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, Forbes, Fortune, US News & World Report and The Princeton Review . From skills and strategies to team dynamics and global expeditions, we make sure Neeley graduates are trailblazing business leaders - each in their own individual way.