After six weeks of intense competition, a team of four students from the University of Lagos has emerged winner of the maiden edition of the Coca-Cola Global Management Challenge.
The team made up of final year students of the school; Abdullahi Salimat, Department of Finance; Adeniyi Talabi, Department of Systems Engineering; Oyekan Idris, Department of Accounting and Olubodun Sulaiman, Department of Business Administration came tops in the competition for their innovative business solutions. They will represent Nigeria for the first time at the international finale coming up in Dubai, in April, 2018.
Announcing the winners, Nwamaka Onyemelukwe, Manager Public Affairs and Communications, Coca-Cola Nigeria remarked that the competition is in line with Coca-Cola’s commitment to building capacity of the Nigerian youths by harnessing their potentials.
“Basically what we have done with the competition is to provide a platform for these undergraduates to express themselves as well as discover their entrepreneurial skills. We are certain that all of the participants have been impacted and are now better prepared to pursue their entrepreneurial dreams,” she explained.
While lauding the initiative, Prof Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, Vice Chancellor of the University of Lagos, pointed out that it was timely and commendable. His words, “This couldn’t have come at a better time. The initiative ties into the University’s objectives to be a solution driven business school that leverages the knowledge of business simulation and power software to train 21st century class of business executives. We are really grateful to Coca-Cola for sponsoring this project.”
For his part, Ryan Fayan, Coordinator, Global Management Challenge expressed delight with the contestants for giving their best. “It’s quite impressive, the solutions they brought to the table. It goes to show the amount of budding business talents waiting to be discovered in Nigeria. I am quite optimistic that the winning team will do extremely well at the finals in Dubai,” he opined.
He disclosed that plans are underway to expand the competition to reach more universities across the country.
Basking in their victory, Salimat who recounted the team’s experience working on the assigned task said, “We were given a virtual company, initially identical to every other company in the competition. We were then asked to develop our own company by making a series of decisions relating to every aspect of the business. It was quite an experience and we learned a lot working on the assignment”.
The Global Management Challenge is the largest strategy and management competition in the world based on business simulation. Each year the winners in the challenge for this initiative gather together and compete at the international level.
The competition started in 1980 in Portugal and has involved more than 40 countries and 700,000 participants across 5 continents.
This year the competition, sponsored by Coca-Cola was launched for the first time in Nigeria with 80 students from the University of Lagos competing for the first place at the National level. The emerged winners will get an all expense trip paid to Dubai to represent Nigeria in the upcoming international final in April 2018 courtesy of The Coca-Cola Company.