The tightest of contests ended with RMIT Vietnam seizing victory at the national HSBC Business Plan Competition, winning the chance to compete at the regional finals in Hong Kong on 31 May.
Eleven teams from Vietnamese universities narrowed down to three teams in the final: two from RMIT and one from the Foreign Trade University.
Team Two (ie. Young Buffalo) from RMIT Vietnam won by a just a whisker, HSBC ‘s Chief Operating Officer Karine Colyn said, with the Foreign Trade University in second place.
“It was a good field of competition combatting at a high level,” Ms Colyn said.
“This competition gives undergraduates the opportunity to develop their analytical skills, creativity and communications skills.
“These are critical skills that students will need to enter the business world in a couple of years.”
The winning team of final year students won VND 50 million; Diep My Xuan Thanh said they had surpassed their expectations.
“In practice we had issues dealing with time constraints – we certainly hadn’t expected we could speak that fluently,” she said.
Team coach Melvin Fernando said watching the competition finals had been nerve-wracking.
“I’ve been with these guys since the beginning and to see them progress this much is amazing. This is the first time they’ve presented to such a large audience, more than 70 people.”
In the run-up to the Hong Kong regional final the team will set aside around four hours a week to practice, competitor Nguyen Canh Luan said.
“Our presentation skills are our biggest weakness so we’ll be working on that.”
RMIT Vietnam’s Team One gained third place, winning VND 20 million. Competitor Nguyen Pham Nguyen Vu said his team would go back to their studies and come back stronger in next year’s competition.
Students on both RMIT Vietnam teams are pursuing degrees in the Centre of Commerce and Management.
Story: Sharon Webb