BYU MBA Students Win ACG Cup Competition

Apr 09 2012

A team of Brigham Young University MBA students bested teams from other Utah schools by winning first place and $5,000 at this year's Association for Corporate Growth Cup Competition in Salt Lake City.

Student teams were given a case study requiring them to play an advisory role to a private equity firm that was considering an investment. The teams used their knowledge and skills to formulate strategic recommendations. Teams then pitched their ideas to a panel of professionals from within the ACG community.

"We presented to investment bankers and private equity investors who do this kind of work every day," says Cory Steffen, a second-year MBA student on the winning team. "The insightful feedback and comments they gave helped us view the case from a real-world perspective. We learned a great deal by putting our financial modeling and valuation skills into practice during the competition."

The BYU team included second-year MBA students: Tyler Casper from Salt Lake City; Todd Castagna from Newhall, Calif.; Steffen from Salt Lake City; Adam Mabry from Mesa, Ariz.; and Michael Cox from Ogden, Utah.

To develop its winning plan, the BYU team analyzed potential returns as well as discussed at length potential risks and multiple investment alternatives.

"The case study was quite a challenge, and our team put in several late nights to complete our analysis — one night we worked until four a.m.," Steffen says. "We interacted well as a team and debated the issues in the case until we felt comfortable with our recommendations. In the end our hard work paid off, and we delivered a solid presentation to the judges at the final round."

ACG Utah presented a total of $8,000 in awards to four winning teams at the second annual competition. The University of Utah, Utah Valley University and Westminster College each placed as finalists and received a $1,000 cash prize. Southern Utah University, Utah State University and Weber State University also participated in the competition.

The competition is sponsored by the Utah Chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth, an organization of Utah business executives who come together to network and learn from leading authorities on building corporate value.

The Marriott School is located at Brigham Young University, the largest privately owned, church-sponsored university in the United States. The school has nationally recognized programs in accounting, business management, public management, information systems and entrepreneurship. The school's mission is to prepare men and women of faith, character and professional ability for positions of leadership throughout the world. Approximately 3,000 students are enrolled in the Marriott School's graduate and undergraduate programs.

Contact Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Janet Barton