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BBA Thammasat: The 2nd Runner up team of NUS-DBS International Case Competition

By Pichaya Angkatavanich BBA#15
After around 2 hours long flight, the all-girls Thammasat team consisting of 4 senior girls: Pichaya Angkatavanich, Jeannie Sthavornmanee, Paramee Smittinet and Jiraya Boonyasait accompanied by Ajarn Satjaporn Tungsong arrived at Singapore to compete in the NUS-DBS International Case Competition 2009.  This is the first time National University Singapore hosted this case competition to mark the 45th anniversary celebration of its Business School.  The team was very excited to compete together for the first time, but also nervous at the same time.  This is because the competition format will not be announced until the day before the case is released.  After arrival, we were able to meet with students from top 12 business schools around the world spanning across 8 countries.  For the first two days of the competition, the organizing committee held activities allowing participants to fully experience the very unique Singaporean culture including Mambo Jambo@Zouk and an Amazing Race around the city with visits to Little India and China Town.
The competition format was then announced early in Thursday morning to be a 24-hour competition, where only 2 laptops will be given, and no textbook or notes are allowed.  There will be two divisions consisting of 6 teams each, and only the top 2 teams from each division will advance to the finals.  Another curve ball was thrown again where the committee announced that finalists will be given 30 minutes to work on a new management issue that will be addressed before the final round presentations.  In the evening at Sentosa, an opening dinner was held and team divisions were drawn.  We were in Division B and had to compete against Seoul National University, University of California Berkeley, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Chulalongkorn University, and University of Hong Kong.

At 7:30a.m. in the morning, we were the first team in our division to receive the case.  This year’s case was revolved around Hyflux Ltd, which is a global environmental solutions company based in Singapore specializing in membrane technologies with products and services ranging from seawater desalination, water recycling, wastewater and potable water treatment, to renewable resources management.  After glasses of frappuccinos, instant coffee, Red Bull, and hours of no sleep, the team presented to honorable judges and advisors from the different schools.  After hours of waiting, Thammasat was announced to be one of the finalists competing against National University Singapore, Queen’s University, and Chualongkorn University.  A new management concern was given for us to solve in 30 minutes before our presentation addressing the issue on the feasibility of its consumer products being marketed to help relieve people in areas where water sanitation is a problem.
We presented during the final round smoothly and answered the questions by the judges confidently.  After the presentations were done, many teams and advisors came to congratulate us and praising us how we did a great job during the finals.  Although in the end, Queen’s University was the winner of this competition, we were able to secure the 2nd runner up position, whereas NUS was award the 1st runner up, and Chulalongkorn University the 3rd runner up.  We would like to thank Dr. Alan Williams, Dr. Somboon Kulvisaechana, and Ajarn Satjaporn Tungsong for advising us throughout the practices.  Lastly, we would like to thank Ajarn James Paul Fitzpatrick for all of his dedication, hard work in training us for the past years, and believing in our team.
8 First prize awards in 5 years: Global business case competition
2009:    Winner of Scotiabank International Case Competition, Canada
2008:    Winner of McGill Management International Case Competition, Canada
Winner of Copenhagen Business School Case Competition, Denmark
2007:    Winner of Citigroup International Case Competition, Hong Kong
            Winner of Thammasat Undergraduate Business Challenge, Thailand
2005:    Winner of McGill Management International Case Competition, Canada
2004:    Winner of Citigroup International Case Competition, Hong Kong
            Winner of Thammasat Undergraduate Business Challenge, Thailand
Posted date: September 23, 2009 – 11:10 hrs.