Under the theme Uniting Ambition, Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) and student association RSM STAR welcomed 16 teams from top business schools around the world for the annual RSM STAR Case Competition. American University of Beirut won the 12-hour Heineken case, Maastricht University won the 24-hour Coca-Cola case and National University of Singapore took home the top prize for winning the overall competition.

During the last week of April, ambitious students from around the world were invited by RSM International Office and STAR Case Club to compete in the development of strategies for businesses on today’s hot topic issues.

Uniting Ambition

Inspired by RSM STAR’s vision and what they believe these competitions stand for, this theme enabled students to meet and learn from each other’s cultures and perspectives and perfectly aligned with the pillars that STAR case club members endeavour to balance: social issues, academic matters and career. The week included unification-focused activities with day and evening visits in Rotterdam and Amsterdam, networking dinners and inspiring external speakers.

Coca-Cola: how to overcome water scarcity

For the 24-hour Coca-Cola case, teams developed their own strategies against water scarcity. Each team had 24 hours to analyse the case, formulate an argument, prepare a presentation and gather support documentation. The goal was to convince the judges of their strategy for Coca-Cola’s reduction of water consumption and how Coca-Cola could further interact with stakeholders to steer that strategy towards success.

Judges for the Coca-Cola case included Hans van Bochove formerly of Coca-Cola Company Europe, Marga Mathijsen of Ligalli, Marc van Nuland formerly of AON, and deans Ansgar Richter and Michel Lander of RSM.

Heineken: improving the connection with Generation Z

Case club teams arguing the 12-hour Heineken case focused on how Heineken could connect with Generation Z to promote Heineken Silver, paying especially close attention to increasingly regulated data constraints that are making it harder to connect in a meaningful way with Gen-Z.

Judges for the Heineken case were Otto Esser and Wietske de Bruin of Heineken, David van der Lei of Perfetti Van Melle, Jaap van Berkel of Habion, Allard Vegter of Bain & Company, and John Traas of Booking.com.

Competing universities included: National University Singapore; Maastricht University; Simon Fraser University; RSM; University of Sydney; Corvinus University of Budapest; American University of Beirut; Ivey Business School; Copenhagen Business school; HEC Montréal; Thammasat University; Hong Kong University of Science and Technology; University of Washington; University of St. Gallen; University of California, Berkeley; and University of Florida.

Competing RSM students included: Paul Kopp, Emilie Vassaux, Vincent Gerbelot-Barrillon (all IBA year 1) and Kosta Tošić (IBA year 2). Out of all the participants, Best Speaker awards were given to Luce Kaiser of Maastricht University and Viveca Tang of University of Sydney.

With their win of the overall competition, NUS was awarded €500 to donate to the charity of their choice. In a surprise move, the Singaporean government matched that donation, bringing the charitable contribution to €1000!

Read more about the STAR Case Club.

More information

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is one of Europe’s top-ranked 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. www.rsm.nl

For more information about RSM or this release, please contact Erika Harriford-McLaren, communications manager for RSM, on +31 10 408 2877 or by email at harriford@rsm.nl.

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