Business Game St.Gallen 2015 Review

After a successful first edition of the Business Game St.Gallen in April 2014 the organizing team was determined to outperform itself in a second edition and many more to come after that. Some of the members within the group had completed their studies, so the remaining ones put together a new team and got back to work for the BGSG15.

Seven months later, after several hundreds of hours of partner acquisition, campaign and roadshow planning, menu selections, and other orders of business, everything finally came together at the Einstein Congress Hotel in St.Gallen – the game was on!

During these two days, every participant solved four different case studies in four different categories, brought to them by four international companies – BDO, Swarovski, Nespresso and Zurich Insurance. On the second day, every case solution was presented to a jury, composed of both company representatives and academics. The teams with the overall highest scores went on to lock horns in the Eloquence finals, where they held ad-hoc debates on 3D printing, democracy & finance, as well as Anonymous – on stage. The event was topped off with the award ceremony during which each of our corporate partners announced the winners of their challenge. In the end our godfather partner, BDO, announced the team that came out on top in the final debate, the winning team of the Business Game St.Gallen 2015 – Alice Nušlová und Martin Vavrouch, both students of the University of St.Gallen, thus securing our school with a home victory!

Corporate Partners in 2015

BDO is one of the leading Swiss managed companies with expertise in accounting, auditing, tax, legal, outsourcing and management consultancy. It is part of the BDO International network.

Nespresso is the pioneer in premium portioned coffee. With a focus on both direct-to-consumer and business-to-business sales, the company is strongly positioned in the fastest growing segment of the global coffee market.

Swarovski designs, manufactures and globally markets jewelry and high quality crystal, genuine gemstones, created stones and finished products such as accessories and lighting solutions.

Zurich Insurance is Switzerland’s largest and most experienced insurers. The company has a global presence with offices in more than 170 countries around the globe.

Four Challenges – solved by 100 participants in groups of four

Pitch Challenge

The participants took on the roles of consultants for an afternoon! They evaluated different strategic scenarios for a Swiss company in the furniture business, and then pitched their proposal to the company’s management board.

CSR Challenge

Nespresso was looking for new ideas how to engage consumers in creating shared value. During the CSR Challenge, the participants produced a one minute video with their key idea and summarized their reasoning in a slideshow, which presented to and evaluated by the jury.

Marketing Challenge

For Swarovski, the students were asked to develop courses of action for the women’s accessories business segment. A team of Swarovski marketing professionals spent an afternoon hearing about the participants’ ideas.

Strategy Challenge

For Zurich Insurance, the students analyzed the commercial insurance business in Switzerland and evaluated a soft segmentation approach for small and medium-sized enterprises. Representatives of Zurich then assessed the innovative ideas.

Winning teams

Find here a list of all winners of the four Challenges and the Eloquence Finals.

Impressions from the Challenges

The jury

Our participants presented each of the four cases they solved in front of a jury. In order to evaluate their results from both a practical and theoretical viewpoint, our corporate partners were supported by a team of academics who had generously agreed to offer their support. We would like to thank the following academic partners for their valuable and highly appreciated contributions (in alphabetical order):

  • Prof. PhD Simon Evenett, Academic Director MBA-HSG, University of St.Gallen
  • Prof. Dr. Reiner Hillemans, Professor for Strategic Management, International Management and Personnel Management at the Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz
  • Prof. Dr. Dr. Tomi Laamanen, Professor for Strategic Management, University of St.Gallen
  • Dr. Roger Moser, Director of the Asia Connect Center and the India Competence Center at the University of St. Gallen
  • Prof. Dr. Sven Reinecke, Executive Director of the Institute of Marketing and Academic Head of the English Marketing Master track at the University of St.Gallen
  • Prof. Dr. Anja Schulze, Chair of Technology and Innovation Management at the University of Zurich
  • Joachim Thraen, Asia Research Centre, University of St.Gallen
  • Dr. Sybille Zürcher, Post-Doc Assistant at the Chair of Negotiation and Conflict Management at ETH Zurich & Research Assistant to Prof. Dr. Ambühl

The participants – a blend of diverse backgrounds, experiences and cultures

Feedback from our participants

«It was such a nice experience! Nice venue, nice atmosphere, nice food – just perfect!»

«The challenges were engaging, stimulating and very interesting.»

«Very good atmosphere for us to get to know each other!»

«I did things I did not think I was able to do!»

What do our corporate partners say?

«BDO has been the first supporter of the BGSG in 2014. We have – without hesitation – decided to support BGSG in 2015 again, because BGSG offers a unique opportunity to personally meet with a larger group of bright, dedicated and motivated students in both, a personal atmosphere as well as in challenging, practical case-competition.»
Werner Schiesser, CEO BDO Switzerland

«The Business Game St.Gallen was exactly the format we were looking for to show the students who we are and what we do: A truly international event with students from different universities out of Europe competing among each other. It was great to see how engaged the students worked on our business case and we were impressed about the quality of the work they delivered within 4 hours.»
Claudia Di Giuseppe, HR Manager Swarovski

Impressions from the event

Business Game St.Gallen in the media

Visit the Press Room to see news reports and blog articles about us.