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Saturday, March 24, 2018

INNOVATEChina 2018

- CEIBS MBA Business Plan Competition challenges students from top global business schools to (Re)Invent Entrepreneurship

March 24, 2018. Shanghai – An app that allows China’s fast-growing urban elderly — and tech savvy — population to find and join social activities won first prize at the INNOVATEChina 2018 global business plan competition which was held today at the Shanghai Campus. The Yale School of Management team picked up the US$10,000 winner’s cheque for their Silver Hour app after a day of intense competition between finalist teams from the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, IE Business School, Nanyang Business School, ESADE Business School and CEIBS. The CEIBS team was awarded second prize for their app that helps parents in China find the right extracurricular activities for their children by connecting them to freelance teachers. Third prize went to the team from ESADE for their waste management education app.

Established in 2008, INNOVATEChina is one of the flagship annual events organized by CEIBS MBA students. A platform for discovering tomorrow’s innovators, it brings together MBA students from the world’s top business schools to test their skills in a challenging business plan competition.

CEIBS Vice President and Co-Dean Prof. Zhang Weijiong introduced the theme of this year’s competition, (Re)Inventing Entrepreneurship, in his welcome address. “Entrepreneurship and innovation are key drivers of the Chinese economy,” he said. “I thank our partners Santander, McKinsey & Company and MoBike for helping us to bring together six teams with exciting ideas that may one day change the world in the areas of fintech, education and life services.”

The six teams who participated in the final round of competition today were shortlisted from the more than 60 proposals submitted by MBA students from top business schools across five continents. The judges for the final round of competition were:

  • Executive Director & Head of Strategy and Innovation at Santander Asia Pacific Mr. Keith Ng;

  • CEIBS Visiting Professor of Finance Mr. Bob Yang;

  • Bonday Founder Mr. Brian Ong

  • PPDAI Group COO Mr. Feng Zhang;

  • Senior Partner & Co-Chair of Urban China Initiative at McKinsey & Company Dr. Jonathan Woetzel;

  • WestSummit Capital Partner Ms. Kelly Liu;

  • MTS Systems Board Member Mr. Kenneth Yu;

  • Managing Director & Head of China Financial Institutions Investment Banking at Citigroup Mr. Simon Yuan;

  • Director of CEIBS eLab & Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship Dr. Vincent Chang.

Keith Ng, representing InnovateChina's exclusive sponsor Santander, kicked off the day with a keynote speech "NextGen World - AI & Blockchain", in which he shared how AI and blockchain is facilitating the world to change, and how should students prepare for the changes. He encouraged the audience to "watch China's development in AI due to China's unique advantages in data, with its 1.3 billion population living arguably the world's most digitalized lifestyles." He also explained how blockchain is bringing innovation to the world in governance and in the new global internet economy.

Director of CEIBS eLab Prof. Vincent Chang moderated the first panel discussion on business model innovation in life services and education. The panellists agreed with McKinsey & Company’s Dr. Jonathan Woetzel’s assertion that ‘cheaper, faster and more global’ are the key characteristics of innovation in China, and point to an improving quality of life. The new era of financial services was the focus of the second panel discussion, which was moderated by Prof. Bob Yang. Most of the panellists agreed that the finance industry is moving from competition to cooperation.

James Kent
Janine M. Coughlin