The number of entries to the 2003 National Social Venture Competition is the highest in the event's history, despite the difficult climate for business startups, according to the competition's organizers at the Haas School of Business, the Columbia Business School, and The Goldman Sachs Foundation.
This year, 95 teams from leading business schools around the world have entered the competition, marking a 23 percent increase over last year's submissions. Entrants encompass a variety of categories including community development, education, the environment, healthcare, technology, and financial services. The teams of MBA students and entrepreneurs in the competition seek to launch businesses that create financial value through positive social or environmental impact.
Participating teams represent a number of business schools in the United States, including Columbia Business School (Columbia University), the Haas School (UC Berkeley), Harvard Business School (Harvard University), Kellogg School of Management (Northwestern University), Sloan School of Management (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Stanford Graduate School of Business (Stanford University) and Wharton School of Business (University of Pennsylvania). International representation includes the London Business School, IESE at the University of Navarra (Spain) and INSEAD (France).
Of the 95 teams, 65 were selected to advance to the regional finals, which were held at Columbia Business School on March 7 and will be held at the Haas School on March 14. A rigorous judging process will bring together over 40 leaders in the social enterprise arena for full-day sessions at each school to evaluate the business plans. Of those 65 teams, eight will continue to the final round of judging hosted by the Eugene M. Lang Center for Entrepreneurship at Columbia Business School in New York on April 11-12.
Teams will compete for a total of $100,000 in prizes in three categories: businesses with high-growth potential, businesses with medium-growth potential (including nonprofit organizations), and businesses that best blend both the financial and the social returns on investment.
The social and environmental impact of the business plans is measured in terms of their Social Return on Investment (SROI), a concept developed in recent years to quantify the financial benefits society derives from a business's positive social or environmental impact.
Competing teams will be judged by a group of venture philanthropists, social venture investors, angel investors, venture capitalists, and social venture entrepreneurs, whose expertise spans a breadth of social, environmental, and business subjects. Judges for the final competition include Laura Callahan (Rockefeller Foundation); Cathy Clark (Columbia Business School); Tony Lent (EA Capital); Willy Osborn (Commons Capital, LLC); and William Rosenzweig (Haas School).
The competition began three years ago as a student-organized social venture competition at the Haas School. It expanded its national scope in 2001 with new partners - the Columbia Business School and The Goldman Sachs Foundation, which has provided $1.5 million in funding for the competition.
The Haas School career center is pulling out all the stops this spring to help Berkeley MBA students in their job and internship searches. Once again, Haas alumni are playing a crucial role in this process, both through mentoring students and by providing job leads in their companies.
"We rely heavily on the Haas community for hiring Berkeley MBAs, and this year is no exception," says Abby Scott, director of MBA career services. "We appreciate any leads or opportunities for employment from alumni and their firms."
Throughout the spring, alumni career panels have brought together students and alumni who share interests in specific industries. Upcoming career panels include finance (March 20), healthcare/biotech (April 7), and marketing (April 24).
On-campus recruitment for internships started in late January, and so far dozens of companies have come to Berkeley to interview Haas students. Recruitment for internships and career positions will continue well into the spring.
According to Scott, this year the center has seen an increase in on-campus recruiting from biotech and medical devices firms. We are also seeing renewed activity in the technology sector, with companies such as HP, Apple, Sun, and Microsoft setting up internship interviews with our account manager for technology, Richard Wong. Typically, about 40% of Berkeley MBA students find their jobs through the on-campus recruitment process, and another 20% find their jobs through Haas networks, campus events, and the career center's electronic job postings database.
In addition to on-campus recruitment, the career services office manages resume collections for employers and schedules several career fairs and networking events throughout the semester. Industry-focused account managers are hard at work, identifying companies that are hiring MBAs -- often through alumni -- and encouraging them to connect with club leaders, to attend career fairs, and to submit job postings.
Alumni interested in sharing their experience or job leads, are encouraged to contact the career center at 510-642-8124. The Haas Alumni Network provides career connections for Haas alumni from all programs. Visit http://haas.berkeley.edu/alumni/ for more information.
Career services for Haas School undergraduates are provided by Cal Career Center on the central campus. For more information, visit http://career.berkeley.edu/.
The AsianTigers, a team of three Berkeley MBA students from the Evening & Weekend MBA program, advanced to the semifinal round of L'Oreal's worldwide e-Strat Challenge last week. The AsianTigers currently rank #6 in the US, #12 in the North American region, and #61 among 176 teams around the world.
The Haas School was among the top three US business schools in terms of the number of teams that competed in the game. AsianTigers was one five Haas School teams - four MBA and one undergraduate team - that have been participating in the first five round of the game since January. Northwestern University's Kellogg School sported 12 teams, New York University's Stern School 7 teams.
The e-Strat Challenge is a business simulation based on the beauty industry in which students act as general managers of a firm with three beauty products. As part of the simulation, the student teams make business decisions to keep their virtual companies on track against four virtual cosmetics competitors. Business strategies include decisions on pricing policy, production issues, research and development strategy, finance, marketing, advertising, and brand positioning. Each of the six rounds of the game typically involves 150 business decisions.
AsianTigers is a team of three first-year Evening & Weekend MBA students, Lin Yang, Xiangjun Wu, and Sandeep Mangla. AsianTigers is currently in the sixth round of the game.
"This competition is a combination of a game and a real class project. It provides us MBA students with a great opportunity to apply what we learn in class to a competitive market in a fun way," said Lin Yang. "I'm meeting many interesting people, including some of L'Oreal's US vice presidents, by participating in this game."
All participating teams were divided into five regional zones around the world. In round six, judges will select the winning team of each regional zone to advance to the finals in Paris, where the finalists will present their strategic business plans to a group of judges at L'Oreal's headquarters in Paris on April 22, 2003.
For L'Oreal, the e-Strat Challenge is an element of their global recruiting strategy. "The competition allows L'Oreal to recruit talent from around the world," said Jenna Sheldon, director of human resources in Corporate Strategic Recruiting and the coordinator for e-Strat. "Loreal generally hires 12 to 15 MBAs for full-time jobs and internship positions each year, and the game allows us to see the actual work product of hundreds of business students."
L'Oreal officials came to visit the Haas School campus in February to meet the Haas School teams.
Members of the MBA Investment Club will give live stock recommendations on CNBC's Power Lunch on Wednesday, March 12, at 10:30 a.m.
Club members Jon Belk, Steve Egli, and Waldemar Mozes will share detailed analyses of their stock choices and discuss the investment club. To watch, stop by the MBA lounge and tune in CNBC. For more information visit http://moneycentral.msn.com/content/CNBCTV/TV_Info/PowerLunch.asp.
The Investment Club manages a portfolio of stocks and invests the funds on behalf of Haas alumni, faculty, staff, and students. The Investment Club meets every Wednesday at 5:00 p.m. in F318. All interested MBA students are invited to attend. Please send any inquiries about the CNBC event or the Investment Club to Jon Belk (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Alex Hacking (email@example.com).
The Boeing Company has recognized two Haas undergraduate students, Katherine Lyn-Nan Keil and Kinman Tong, for their outstanding academic achievements by awarding them the Boeing Undergraduate Scholarships.
Keil, a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Alpha Lambda Delta, the Golden Key Honor Society, and the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, is also a UC Berkeley Alumni Scholar Emerging Leader and has served as a mentor to new Haas School students. While maintaining a 3.953 GPA, she still manages to find time to play basketball and volleyball, attend Cal Athletics events, and play guitar.
Tong has a 3.979 GPA and has served in many leadership roles in the Haas undergraduate student government including executive vice president, senior advisor, vice president of alumni relations, and secretary and senator of the Haas Business School Association. He was named to the President's Honor Roll for his 4.0 GPA in the 1999-2000 academic year. He has a strong interest in community service and has volunteered for projects such as Rebuilding Together, Habitat for Humanity, and Asian Health Services.
A recent study co-authored by Kristiana Raube, adjunct professor and executive director of the graduate program in health management, was featured in Women's Health Weekly on March 13 in the article, "Obstetrics: Black Women's Favorable Opinion of Prenatal Care Doesn't Translate to Use." The study's findings challenge the assumption that improving women's satisfaction with prenatal care will lead them to make use of it.
Severin Borenstein, the E.T. Grether Professor in Public Policy and Business Administration, commented on Sen. Barbara Boxer's inquiry into whether oil companies, like their energy counterparts, are manipulating the market to increase gas prices in the following news sources:
The Oakland Tribune published a tribute to Professor Emeritus Frederic Morrissey, who died on February 27 at the age of 82 from complications of a brain aneurysm. The San Francisco Chronicle also ran an obituary on March 6. Read the full article, titled "Former UC Berkeley professor dies," at http://www.oaklandtribune.com/Stories/0,1413,82~1726~1224670,00.html.
General Motors vice-chairman Bob Lutz, BS 61, was featured in the Financial Times on March 5 in the article, "GM Delays Launch of Cadillac Marque in Europe." Read the full article at http://news.ft.com/servlet/ContentServer? pagename=FT.com/StoryFT/FullStory&c=StoryFT&cid=1045511330930.
Severin Borenstein remarked on the possibility of the FERC ordering energy companies to refund California $9 billion for manipulating energy markets in 2000 and 2001. Read the full Oakland Tribune article, titled "State Makes Power Case" and published on March 4, at http://www.oaklandtribune.com/Stories/0,1413,82~10834~1219503,00.html.
The Berkeley Asia Business Conference, held at the Haas School of Business on March 1, was mentioned in the Contra Costa Times on March 4 in the article, "Service Jobs Flowing into India." Vivek Paul, CEO of Bangalore-based Wipro Ltd. and one of the conference's speakers, commented on India's inexpensive workforce. Read the full article at http://www.bayarea.com/mld/cctimes/business/5311487.htm.
Severin Borenstein commented on the difference between oil refiner margins and those of dealers in the North County Times on March 4. Read the full article, titled "Gas Prices Set Record: $2.03 a Gallon, on Average," at http://www.nctimes.net/news/2003/20030304/51017.html.
Severin Borenstein remarked on the California state government brief filed with FERC, which alleges that energy firms manipulated the energy market in 2000 and 2001. Read the full San Jose Mercury News article, posted on March 4 and titled "Showdown Ahead Over Energy Costs," at http://www.bayarea.com/mld/mercurynews/news/5311287.htm? template=contentModules/printstory.jsp.
Assistant professor Terrance Odean's study on investor behavior was mentioned in TheStreet.com on March 3 in the article, "The Right Way to Buy and Hold." Read the full article at http://www.thestreet.com/_tsclsii/funds/mutualfundmondaydm/10071588.html.
Hal Varian, professor in the Haas Operations and Information Technology Management Group, was extensively quoted in Warren's Washington Internet Daily on March 3 in the article, titled "Hollywood: Be Careful What You Wish For with DRM." Varian remarked on sellers' digital rights approach.
Catherine Wolfram, assistant professor in the Economic Analysis and Policy Group, appeared on CNBC on March 3 to discuss California's recent filing with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, describing alleged market manipulation.
Severin Borenstein remarked on the actual amount of money that the FERC will order energy companies to refund California in Reuters on March 3 in the article "Calif. to Show New Evidence of Utility Price Gouging." Read the full article at http://reuters.com/financeNewsArticle.jhtml? type=governmentFilingsNews&storyID=2317241.
The third annual Berkeley Asia Business Conference, organized by Haas MBA students, was featured in the San Jose Mercury News on March 2 in the article, "Conference Offers Tips for Business in Asia." Dean Tom Campbell commented that by bringing together business leaders and an international student body, the conference provides a forum to discuss critical business issues in Asia today. Read the full article at http://www.bayarea.com/mld/mercurynews/news/local/5298619.htm? template=contentModules/printstory.jsp.
John Woolard, MBA 97 and co-founder of Silicon Energy, was featured in the Oakland Tribune and San Mateo County Times on March 2 in the article, "Firm's Co-Founder Successful in Own Element." Read the full article at http://www.oaklandtribune.com/Stories/0,1413,82~10834~1215619,00.html.
Terrance Odean, commented on insider trading in the Chicago Tribune on March 2 in the article, "When Executives Sell Stock; Talk about Good Timing: Execs Sell Before the Fall."
The Berkeley Asia Business Conference was featured in The East Bay Business Times on February 28 in the article, "UC Business Forum Builds Bridge to Asia." MBA student Meagan Busath commented on the business relationship between the Bay Area and Asia. Read the full article at http://eastbay.bizjournals.com/eastbay/stories/2003/03/03/story7.html.
Hal Varian appeared on NPR's Morning Edition on February 25 in "Profile: Increase in DVD Purchases Hurting DVD and Video Rental Business." Varian commented that studios have deliberately sold DVDs at lower prices to encourage purchase over renting.
Hal Varian commented on the difficulty of storage management for biotech firms in Network World on February 24 in the article, "Data Deluge Specialized Storage Systems Help Life Sciences Firm Manage Fixed Content."
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