SJIM Hosts an International B-Plan Competition
During the months of October and November, St. Joseph’s Institute of Management (SJIM), organized an international business plan competition on “Developing a scalable and sustainable business plan addressing recycling in the Indian scenario.”
This event was a joint endeavor between SJIM and the Albers School of Business and Economics at Seattle University, USA. For the past couple of months, students of SJIM have been collaborating in virtual teams with students from Albers. The SJIM students had a keen understanding of the complexities of implementing solutions in the developing world, whereas the American students had an understanding of what has already been successfully implemented in their country. Together, they harnessed the two countries’ technical and social expertise towards solving this developmental problem.
From among the twelve teams that participated, three finalist teams were shortlisted by a European panel of judges including Dr. Florian Loebermann, a venture capitalist from Germany, who is currently Head of Corporate Venturing at Altana AG; Fredrik Hagenius, an entrepreneur from Sweden, who is the founder of Young Entrepreneurs of Sweden, of Campusbokhandeln, and of Decarbonise; and Pelle Lütken, a policy specialist from Denmark, working at the UNDP, and who has focuses on corporate social responsibility in the private sector, international organizations such as the UNDP and ILO, and civil society projects.
The finals for this competition was held on Saturday, 18th November 2017 at SJIM. The three finalist teams presented their b-plans to a four-member panel of judges from India consisting of Rev. Dr. Cyprian Tellis SJ (PhD, Boston College, USA and an expert in social ethics), Viswanathan S (an IIM-A alumnus and CEO of Kentree Business Advisory), Ashish Nichani (co-founder of PlaceofOrigin.in, India`s first & largest marketplace for speciality Indian foods), and Roshan D’Silva (founder of Tripvillas, Asia’s largest vacation rental website). The three finalist teams also fielded a long list of challenging questions from the jury.
The team consisting of Astran Gonsalves and Neena Thomas from India and Vlad Melnic from USA won the competition for their ideas to convert human waste and slurry to bio-fuel for industrial use. There were two other finalist teams: Harshitha S Gowda, Sanjay and Karthikeyan Naidu had a business plan about recycling electricity, while Sahadev K. A., M Merwyn Rio and Adel Nafa proposed convert waste to detergent through biofuels.