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Kellogg Students Advanced to the Global Social Venture Competition finals

4/1/2005 - A team from the Kellogg School of Management advanced to the national finals of the sixth annual Global Social Venture, a unique business plan competition focusing on a social return on investment. The Kellogg team’s business plan was one of nine chosen to compete in the finals in California on April 15, marking the first time Kellogg students have advanced to the finals.

Congratulations to Mina Kumar (KSM ’05) and Coleman Long (KSM ‘05) along with University of Chicago public policy student Tom McKone who received an honorable mention for their plan in the final round.

The mission of the competition was to promote the creation of financially self-sufficient or profitable social ventures. The plans were judged according to the practicability of their business concepts, and the feasibility and potential impact of the stated goals. All plans were expected to perform a social return on investment (SROI) analysis as part of their business plan.

The Kellogg team presented their business plan on Fuerza Research, a firm that provides market research on teenage trends using a unique research methodology where low-income, urban teens are hired and trained to conduct focus groups and interviews of their peers.

“It was a thrilling experience to present at the Global Social Venture experience,” said Kumar. “I believe that our success was, in part, due to the very unique and supportive environment at Kellogg.”

Each Global Social Venture competition business plan finalist and semi-finalist was also eligible to receive the special “Social Return on Investment” prize. The Kellogg School’s own Andrew Youn (KSM ’06) received the honor. Youn was flown to California to present his SROI methodology which was directed towards the HIV/AIDS crisis in Africa.

“Watching Andrew present the Social Return on Investment prize was equally thrilling – doing a convincing SROI, in addition to being extremely difficult, is really the essence of this particular competition,” said Kumar.

In addition to the Kellogg School, the teams that competed in the finals represented UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, Columbia Business School, Wharton, the London School of Business, NYU, ESEAD, University of North Carolina and MIT. Top honors were received by the team from UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, followed by second place Columbia and a team composed of Wharton and London Business School students received third place.