GMC Partners with World Trade Center Utah

PROVO, Utah – Dec 11, 2018 – More than 3,500 Utah companies export goods or services internationally, and this semester, students at the BYU Marriott School of Business will help even more companies join those ranks. Thanks to the Global Management Center’s partnership with World Trade Center Utah, students will work with executives of local companies, performing an in-depth, product-specific analysis of global markets. 

“Studying out of a book, memorizing concepts, and then passing a test can be the worst way to learn and prepare,” says Lee Daniels, associate teaching professor of marketing at BYU Marriot’s Global Management Center. 

With that philosophy in mind, it is easy to see why Daniels agreed to partner with WTC Utah after the organization suggested his students conduct an International Market Selection Analysis (IMSA) for seven local companies. During Fall 2017 semester, Daniels split his students into seven teams and assigned each team to one of the companies, whose products ranged from children’s toys to high-adventure gear.

“Once the student team is matched with a company, an executive outlines the company’s goals and risk preferences,” says Cameron Corbridge, a BYU student from Kingman, Arizona, currently interning with WTC Utah. The students then use that information, along with tools from WTC Utah, to determine which international markets best fit the company’s product. 

“The goal is for the students to identify roles and responsibilities within a team construct and deliver a quality product to an executive, both in a written report format and a quality presentation,” says Daniels. 

As part of that report and presentation, students are expected to recommend three countries best suited for their company’s product. In addition, students must give a detailed explanation of their methodology and the research that supports their recommendations. 

Research databases such as Euromonitor, UN Comtrade, and IBISWorld form the backbone of student analysis, but course professors want to make sure students are not just crunching numbers. 

“Anyone can go out and collect data,” says Daniels. “The real key is how you do the analysis, so it’s not just an accounting exercise of inputting numbers but really doing some strategic consulting.”

Due to the project’s growing popularity, a record fourteen businesses have requested to participate in this semester’s IMSA. The list of businesses includes Owlet Baby Care, a company launched in 2013 by four BYU students.

“This kind of support is invaluable,” says Jacob Colvin, Owlet co-founder and director of international operations. “I’m looking to the IMSA project to complement a study done prior, but I feel this deeper analysis will be helpful in making better decisions going forward.” 

Since the project’s inception, both Daniels and Corbridge have worked hard to incorporate student feedback and their own observations in order to make the project even more meaningful for international business students. The GMC is confident the student IMSA project, now in its third semester, will be even more rewarding for both the students and the businesses they consult. 

Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Carson Perry