College of Business: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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Student Team Proposes New Mobile Technology Solution to Capital One Executives


(From left) Jarett Messing, Stephen Powers, Brian Bai.

Another team from the Illinois College of Business achieved case competition excellence this year. In November, juniors Brian Bai '13, Jarett Messing '13, and Stephen Powers '13 walked away with a first place title from the annual Capital One Case Competition, held at Capital One’s corporate headquarters in McClean, Virginia.

The task set before the contestants was to create a banking product based on trends in mobile technology. Students from the University of Chicago, University of Central Florida, University of Michigan, University of North Carolina, and the University of Pennsylvania competed with Illinois in front of 5 senior members of Capital One acting as judges.

The Illinois team chose to focus on the Capital One rewards program with an idea to create a group rewards system that increases rewards based on the number of people who shop as a group using the Capital One card. For example, a smartphone application supplementing the effort with social media technologies, allow group shoppers to “check-in” and see which friends are also shopping.

Judges were impressed with the team’s presentation, ability to answer questions, and the creation of new exciting incentives for their reward program which has reached maturity as a marketing tool.

“I think the best part was how relevant it is to the world today,” said Bai. “Every industry is looking for ways to improve operations through technology. Additionally, it was a great opportunity to develop presentation skills in front of very senior members of the company.”

UIUC College of Business