Wake Forest University School of Business Announces Winners of 24th Annual Marketing Summit

3.1.2014 Marketing, News Release, School News
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Wake Forest University School of Business Announces Winners of 24th Annual Marketing Summit
Graduate and undergraduate teams come from around the globe to compete in premier event

WINSTON-SALEM, NC – Wake Forest University School of Business 24th Annual Marketing Summit, featuring a record $108,000 in prize money, awarded first place to an MBA student team from UCLA Anderson School of Management. They will return to campus with a $75,000 cash prize from the international case competition presented by the School of Business Center for Retail Innovation on Saturday, March 1.

“This is a truly international event, with teams coming from Europe, Asia and Latin America to compete – more than 20% of the teams are international,” said Roger Beahm, professor of practice in marketing and executive director of the School’s Center for Retail Innovation. “We have seen the Marketing Summit build awareness and interest in recent years, but the fact that students are willing to come great distances on their own is a testament to the quality of this event.”

Reynolds American, Inc., the MBA case sponsor, challenged eight teams from universities around the world to create a marketing plan for their Zonnic brand nicotine replacement therapy in just 36 hours. Members of the winning MBA case team from UCLA include: Alisa Sommer, Jenn Hyman, Cameron Snaza, Fran Benjamin, and Breeana Bey.

“It’s been outstanding to be a part of the Marketing Summit again, and work with such wonderful business talent,” said Brice O’Brien, Reynolds American executive vice president of consumer marketing, who earned his MBA from Wake Forest in 1996. “The students brought such energy, enthusiasm and creativity to their consumer-centric solutions. Working with such smart, talented and focused students from around the world and giving back to the community through our sponsorship was a huge highlight.”

USC Marshall School of Business finished second in the graduate competition and received a $10,000 prize, while Cornell University Johnson Graduate School of Management placed third and took home a $5,000 check. Other participating teams included: Wake Forest University, Carnegie Mellon University Tepper School of Business, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Indiana University Kelley School of Business, and University of Cambridge Judge School of Business.  The John A. Scarritt ‘79 MBA MVP award plaque and $1,000 goes to Jenn Hyman from UCLA for her distinction and outstanding contributions during the presentations to the judges.

This year Cheerwine sponsored the undergraduate competition, which challenged six teams to offer ideas that would allow this iconic family-owned southern brand, competing in the land of soft drink giants, to liberate itself and become a national brand. Northeastern University D’Amore-McKim School of Business won first place and takes home $10,000. Members of the winning undergraduate case team were Jed Baker, Jake Wainwright, Joe Haniak and Madeline Lutkewitte.

“The diversity of the student teams is empowering for a family brand like ours that has been in one region for so long. To get the variety of these students’ opinions and insights from beyond our typical reach is rich and beyond anything we expected,” said Tom Barbitta, Cheerwine’s senior vice president of marketing and sales.

University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School finished second in the undergraduate case competition and University of California, Berkeley Haas School of Business finished third among undergraduate business teams. Other competing undergraduate schools included: Wake Forest University, Universidad Panamericana (Mexico) and University of Maryland, College Park. The undergraduate MVP award and $1,000, sponsored by the North Carolina Retail Merchants Association, goes to Wake Forest senior Maggie Wagner.

Marketingsummitlive.com, with videos, photo galleries and more from the competition saw 95,000 web hits from 84 countries and more than 39 percent on mobile devices. The website also allows online voting for Fan Favorite – the school with the most virtual support during the competition. Carnegie Mellon University Tepper School of Business received a $1,000 prize for Fan Favorite, a repeat win from last year. More than 22,000 votes were cast for this award during the competition, up 37% from last year’s event.

The Wake Forest University School of Business 24th Annual Marketing Summit is the premier student-run marketing case competition in the world, led by three co-chairs: Gray Robinson (MBA ’14), Margaret Fertig (MBA’14) and Blake Armstrong (MBA ’14) and faculty advisor Roger Beahm.

“The most impressive part of this Marketing Summit is that every time I have encountered a Summit participant – competitor, judge, sponsor, faculty or staff – they adamantly express how thankful they are to be here,” said Robinson.  “It’s a testament to how special this event is. People don’t just come to judge or compete, they come to have the Marketing Summit experience.”

Prize money and trophies were awarded during a reception and awards gala sponsored by Reynolds American, Inc. Other sponsors in addition to Reynolds American, Inc. and Cheerwine include: Frito-Lay, American Association of Advertising Agencies, Bridgestone Golf, Bellomy Research, Inmar, North Carolina Retail Merchants Association, Twin City Quarter, Chick-fil-A, Texas Pete Hot Sauce, John Scarritt ’79 and Krispy Kreme.

For more information on the Marketing Summit including competing teams, videos, photos, blogs and news feeds, please visit www.marketingsummitlive.com.