RSM graduates win European material handling competition
Recent master graduates Marcell Bozsik and Adam Geiszt won the Smart Logistics Challenge, an international case competition organised by the European Materials Handling Federation (FEM). The young alumni developed a strong business case for the future of the material handling industry, while finalising their theses as students from the MSc Strategic Management Class of 2018 at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM).
In the Smart Logistics Challenge, FEM challenged participants to come up with business models to disrupt the materials handling industry. The competition received 571 registrations from 26 European countries for its three themes: enabling e-commerce, cobotics in logistics, and logistics in a shared economy.
“This was an interesting opportunity to apply what we learned at RSM on a real-life case. We also learned a lot from the mentoring and feedback from industry experts,” said Adam Geiszt and Marcell Bozsik. Their two-member team’s proposal was chosen as one of the 20 most promising ones.
In the second round of the competition, they developed a business model for their idea: an economically viable way to deliver innovation for the industry. For this, they received one month of mentoring from industry experts to put their idea into a solid case.
“Airbnb for 3D printing machines"
“Throughout the competition, we could heavily build on everything we learned at RSM,” said Bozsik. “Not only could we use the business mindset of broad perspective that we learned as strategic management students, but also build on the first-hand knowledge that the university’s connection to the Port of Rotterdam provided.
This resulted in our winning concept of a platform that would basically operate as an Airbnb for 3D printing machines in the maritime industry, mainly by focusing on printing spare parts for ships. The platform would not only aggregate the ever-increasing demand for these parts, match it with the excess capacity of 3D machine owners, but it would also provide quality-assurance and product development for the platform players. 3D printing as a technology is there, for certain spare parts it already provides a faster, better, and economically more viable solution, only the business model had been missing.”
Innovative and feasible
The jury of the Smart Logistics Challenge consisted of C-level managers from Europe’s top logistics and material handling industry, comprising of one representative each from Balyo, Linde, SSI Schaefer Group, Stow, Toyota Material Handling and Vanderlande, plus a representative from FEM. They considered Geiszt and Bozsik’s idea innovative and feasible.
“The jury said they were impressed with our strong focus on a niche product and sector, they liked the idea of a platform as a service model with our visualisation of the process, and that it’s easy to implement the idea from a technical perspective,” said Bozsik.
An open mind and broad skillset
As one of the six winning teams, they presented their idea to a wide audience of C-level managers from the industry at the FEM Congress in September 2018 in Antwerp, Belgium, where they received the award. Bozsik and Geiszt’s master graduation in Rotterdam took place less than a month later. In addition to the ‘VIP trip’ to the FEM Congress, Geiszt and Bozsik won a six-month paid traineeship with one of the sponsoring companies.
Geiszt: “Instead of stacking a bunch of pre-defined tools into our heads, RSM gave us an open mindset and a broad skillset to craft our own tools, and use them for good throughout our career paths and beyond.” He added that he hopes more RSM students take the opportunity to be a part of this competition in the future turn knowledge into action, with “tremendous learning, mentoring, and fun.”
The 2018 contest was the first edition of the competition, which is planned to take place again in two years.
European Materials Handling Federation
Established in 1953 and based in Brussels, FEM is the European federation representing manufacturers of materials handling, lifting and storage equipment. Through its national member associations, FEM speaks for some 1,000 companies that employ around 160,000 people and generate around €50 billion in annual turnover.
Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is one of Europe’s top 10 business schools. RSM provides ground-breaking research and education furthering excellence in all aspects of management and is based in the international port city of Rotterdam – a vital nexus of business, logistics and trade. RSM’s primary focus is on developing business leaders with international careers who can become a force for positive change by carrying their innovative mindset into a sustainable future. Our first-class range of bachelor, master, MBA, PhD and executive programmes encourage them to become critical, creative, caring and collaborative thinkers and doers. Study information and activities for future students, executives and alumni are also organised from the RSM office in Chengdu, China. www.rsm.nl
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