An international business plan competition on “Developing a business idea to reduce food wastage and distribute the food thus saved to those who need it” was organized by jointly by St. Joseph’s Institute of Management, Bangalore and the Albers School of Business and Economics at Seattle University, USA.
Starting from last October, students of St. Joseph’s Institute of Management (SJIM, India), St. Joseph’s College of Law (SJCL, India), Albers School of Business and Economics (Seattle University, USA), College of Law (Seattle University, USA), and College of Arts and Science (Seattle University, USA) have been collaborating in virtual teams. Together, they harnessed the two countries’ technical and social expertise towards solving a serious problem.
Three finalist teams were shortlisted by a European panel of judges including Pelle Lütken, policy specialist, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Denmark; Thomas Kurmann, director of funding, Doctors without Borders, New York/Berlin; and Dr. Florian Loebermann, venture capitalist, Germany, who is currently Head of Corporate Venturing at Altana AG.
The finals for this competition was held on Saturday, 22 nd February 2020 at SJIM. The three finalist teams presented their b-plans to a two-member panel of judges from India consisting of Rev. Fr. Joye James SJ (superior of Indian Social Institute and secretary for the Jesuit Higher Education Association of South Asia) and Ravi Andrews (serial entrepreneur in sustainable solutions). The three finalist teams also fielded a set of challenging questions from the jury.
The team consisting of Maria Blocker (Albers, SU), Aparna T Nambisan (SJCL), Reshma Rose Jacob (SJCL) and Mukundan V (SJIM) won the competition for their idea to help people shop ‘smarter’ and thereby reduce food waste through the prevention of over-buying.
For the first time in this annual competition, this year the team-members from Seattle watched the final round live via video-conferencing.