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St. Bonaventure MBA students achieve first-place run in global shoe company simulation competition

Dec 07, 2023

Two graduate students in the School of Business at St. Bonaventure University were among the top performers in a business simulation competition involving teams from 258 colleges and universities from around the world.

Grant Gutchall and Patrick Smith, students in SBU’s master of business administration program, tied for first place over four consecutive weeks in The Business Strategy Game, an ongoing online exercise where teams of students are tasked with running an athletic footwear company. Teams compete against each other in a global market arena, managing company operations that parallel those of actual athletic footwear companies.

It is truly a global event, with students representing colleges and universities in the United States, Canada, Argentina, Indonesia, Azerbaijan, Greece, the Philippines, Thailand, France, Spain, Saudi Arabia, the Netherlands, and other nations.

“Grant and Patrick were best in the world over four consecutive weeks,” said Dr. Konrad Jamro, associate professor of management. “They were tied for first with a few other teams out of more than 4,400 teams globally.”

The game rates teams based on four performance variables: overall game-to-date score, earnings per share, return on average equity, and stock price. The company run by the Bonaventure duo had a four-week run of first place finishes in the overall game-to-date category, which reflects how well a company met all investor expectations and its relative standing in an industry.

“In addition, Grant and Patrick achieved excellent financial results, scoring every week in the top 2 percent worldwide, and reaching second place in stock price in the final week of the competition,” Jamro said.

The business simulation game is part of St. Bonaventure’s MBA 649 capstone course, Business Policy, which is taught by Jamro. “In each week of the simulation, they make business decisions related to production, distribution, workforce, marketing, sales, finance and corporate social responsibility,” he said.

St. Bonaventure students have a record of success in the competition. Three SBU teams entered The Business Strategy Game in spring semester of this year and also achieved top performances among global competitors, ranking in the top 1 to 3 percent in various performance indicators.

Dr. Todd Palmer, associate professor and chair of the Department of Management at St. Bonaventure, said the performances attest to the quality of students and professors at the university.

“It’s always exciting to see how our students can stack up to students anywhere,” he said. “We do good work at SBU and it shows.”

About the University: The nation’s first Franciscan university, St. Bonaventure University is a community committed to transforming the lives of our students inside and outside the classroom, inspiring in them a lifelong commitment to service and citizenship. Out of 167 regional universities in the North, St. Bonaventure was ranked #6 for value and #14 for innovation by U.S. News and World Report (2024).