Last Friday, the Portuguese University of Porto – a relative outsider – won the finals of the second International Case Competition @ Maastricht (ICC@M) organised by the School of Business and Economics. In these competitions, held at universities all over the world, student teams have to solve a business problem and prepare a presentation on the solution within a limited amount of time.
For the first time, the Maastricht cases consisted of real-life problems. The main one came from pension fund APG: should APG invest in timberland (land covered with forest)? Another one was from the Maastricht Hotel de L’Empereur, which is concerned about its future accessibility when tunnelling for the A2 motorway starts. The sixteen solutions for the hotel all had one in common: get a Facebook account!
The Maastricht team, which has won in recent years in Bangkok, Singapore and Copenhagen, did very well but ended up in a strong group, says Julienne Erckens, member of the organising committee. “Apart from that, all went well. We were just glad that the sixteen teams made it to Maastricht”, she says, referring to the Icelandic ash cloud that hindered the arrivals last year.