March 31, 2008




MBA students from TCU, Indiana, Georgia Tech, Berkeley and Rice won first place and $6,000 in the first annual Neeley Sales & Marketing Strategy Competition , sponsored by Sony Electronics .

A total of 55 MBA students from 17 universities across the U.S. competed in randomly assigned teams of five. Six Sony Electronics executives presented the case and acted as judges for the competition, which centered on The Reader Digital Book by Sony .

The winning team included: Mary Crowe, TCU , Neeley School of Business ; Bonny Smith, Indiana University, Kelley School of Business; Sherlon Kauffman, Georgia Institute of Technology; Diasuke Tanaka, University of California-Berkeley, Haas School of Business; and Roma Patel, Rice University, Jones Graduate School of Management.

Second place and $4,000 went to: Friederike Lenel, TCU , Neeley School of Business ; Al Clark, Emory, Goizueta Business School; Ryan Shaw, University of Arizona, Eller College of Management; Jenna Chen, Georgia Tech; and Christopher DeToro, Indiana, Kelley School of Business. 

Third place and $2,000 went to: Meredith Balderas and Nilesh Gantam, TCU , Neeley School of Business ; Rakesh Arora, Baylor University, Hankamer School of Business; Jeremy Beasley, Rice, Jones Graduate School of Management; and Cynthia Geng, Georgia Tech.

"This was our first case competition with TCU and it was an outstanding success in terms of the talent we saw, the recommendations we received, the interest exhibited in Sony careers and the organization of the event by TCU," said Dennis McTighe, Senior Vice President - Western Zone, for Sony Electronics . "We look forward to doing it again next year."

The competition took place Saturday, March 29, at the Neeley School of Business. MBA students represented TCU, Harvard, Emory, Tulane, Pepperdine, Rice, Chicago, Georgia Tech, Ohio, Rochester, Thunderbird, UC Berkeley, Texas A&M, Rochester, Indiana, University of Kansas, Baylor, Washington University-St. Louis and University of Arizona. 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 excited to host this case competition with Sony, because it allows MBA students to apply what they have learned in class, along with their own skills and experience, to a real sales product, and get to know and work alongside of other MBA students from different schools," said Bill Cron, Associate Dean for Graduate Programs at the Neeley School of Business. "It's very much a real business-world experience."

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.


Elaine Cole
Public Relations Manager
Neeley School of Business at TCU