College of Business: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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EMBAs at ILLINOIS Rise to Global Challenge with WiPro


5/31/2011

Getting an Executive MBA from ILLINOIS includes working with international companies to solve their very real problems. This year, one group of enthusiastic EMBAs completed a venture with WiPro, a global IT services company based in India.

Their task?

Develop a market strategy for WiPro’s BPO (business process outsourcing) entry into China.

This unique opportunity allowed a group of five EMBAs to leverage their 20-month curriculum and all of their past work experience to tackle a challenge worthy of a world-class MBA.

Team members Kermit Johnson, Paul Rajmaira, Dennis Robinson, Tolu Taiwo, and Justin Wilkerson were excited to comment about their experiences with WiPro.

“The Wipro project was one of the most interesting and fulfilling projects I have worked on…I felt as though this project allowed a culminating practical application of all of our class-room education,” said Wilkerson. “We were able to apply our business tools we had learned in marketing, finance, and strategy.”

Taiwo added, “This project has given me a practical understanding of market strategy from conception to final execution. Working with WiPro enabled me to analyze a company’s market entry strategy and to add significant value.”

Robinson was most impressed with the global reach of the project, “What a true global experience; we worked with a firm head quartered in India whose operations were being expanded in China to service the needs of customers not only in the west but in Asia Pacific and Japan.  You can’t get any better of an opportunity anywhere else in an academic setting; this alone was well worth the investment in the Illinois EMBA.”

Robinson was also grateful for the chance to work with strong managers at WiPro, “It was a great pleasure working with the Wipro management team including Jibin Arjunan, Rajat Gupta, Rohan Prabhu, and Hiroshi Tochigi.  What exceptional leaders to work with; they were all very accommodating.”  

Arjunan, roundly agreed with Robinson’s assessment, adding, “We are actively pursuing action items in our marketing strategy from the feedback of the students and have focused our efforts towards [the identified market] segments.”

The team made their final presentation and business recommendations in the WiPro office in the Pudong district of Shanghai.

Professor and Assistant Dean John Clarke, who helped prepare the students for their project, saw WiPro as an exceptional opportunity for the team, “I have completed almost 50 projects in China while teaching in the Illinois EMBA Program and working with Wipro was one of the best experiences I have had. The Wipro management team worked closely with the team throughout the project and the students were given a unique and challenging opportunity to develop real world skills and provide insights to Wipro’s BPO business in China.”

Puneet Chandra, Global Head & Vice President Corporate Business Services New Dehli, flew in from India to China to meet the team and witness the group’s final presentation.

UIUC College of Business