Ekologi, comprised of Universidad Tecnológica de México (UNITEC) undergraduate students Adrián Villa and Enrique Silva, and Caba Construcciones Inteligentes, comprised of Universidad del Valle de México (UVM) graduate and working adult students Alan Camargo and Miguel Barojas, are the winners of their respective categories in the 2012 Global James McGuire Business Plan Competition. Each team will receive a $50,000 low-interest loan to fund the businesses outlined in their business plans and presentations.
The finalist teams who participated in the recent five-day event held concurrently with the annual Laureate Leadership Summit in Miami, Florida included.
Universidad Tecnológica de México (UNITEC): Ekologi: Eco-Friendly Bio-Fertilizer Company (Student representatives: Enrique Silva and Adrián Villa and Professor Edgar López)
Universidad Privada del Norte (UPN): NUNA: Andean Coffee Substitute Beverage Company (Student representatives: Claudia Ocampo and Ricardo Manay and Professor Aldo Esquivel)
- Les Roches International School of Hotel Management: Super Taxi: Mobile Application for Taxi Passengers and Drivers in China (Student Representatives: Jingbo Cui and Naruwan Sakarin and Professor Dimitrios Diamantis)
Graduate/Working Adult Finalists
Universidad del Valle de México (UVM): CABA Construcciones Inteligentes: Affordable Construction Company (Student Representatives: Miguel Barojas and Alan Camargo and Professor Victor Beltrán)
Universidad Tecnológica de México (UNITEC): Ecosphere: Green Roof and Hydroponic Greenhouse Construction Company (Student Representatives: Rodolfo Hurtado and Ricardo Mendizabal and Professor Edgar López)
Universidad Latina de Costa Rica: Bamboo Straws: Eco-Friendly Straw Company (Student Representatives: Cristy Mora and Jonathan Rodríguez and Coach Ariel Sánchez)
18 institutions submitted their top business plans for the undergraduate category and 9 universities submitted their top plans for the graduate/working adult category. An internal selection committee of Laureate faculty and executives evaluated plans from outside of their geographic regions and chose three finalist teams per category to attend the in-person interviews and activities. Participating Laureate faculty and executives in the internal selection process included:
- Christina Muzza, Chair, BiTS Honors Program/Lecturer Marketing and Tourism Management (Germany)
- Jacqueline So, Vice President of Business Development, Laureate China (China)
- Juan Aguirre, Coordinator and Professor of Entrepreneurship, Universidad Latina de Costa Rica (Costa Rica)
- Noemí Discua, Director CEUTEC - La Ceiba Campus (Honduras)
- Pia Huh, Lecturer and Dissertation and Finance Project Leader, Glion Institute of Higher Education (Switzerland)
- Andrés Velarde, Rector, Universidad Peruana del Norte (Peru)
- Dieter Holtz, CEO, Universidad del Valle de México (Mexico)
- Leonardo Maestri Teixeira, Vice-Rector of Post-Graduate Studies, Research, and Outreach UNIFACS (Brazil)
- Lisa Di Sevo, Visiting Lecturer, Domus Academy (Italy)
- Wilson Tay, Dean of Business, INTI International University (Malaysia)
- Pete Pinheiro, Director, Financial Planning & Analysis, Laureate Education, Inc. (US)
- Marco Ibañez, Manager, Financial Planning & Analysis, Laureate Education, Inc. (US)
During the 5 day event in Florida, student teams presented their business ideas to each other; attended a session on leadership and entrepreneurship with Mariana Rodríguez, (CEO, Laureate Peru); Dieter Holtz (CEO, Laureate Mexico); Thorsten Bagschik (CEO, Laureate Germany), and Andrés Velarde, Rector, Universidad Privada del Norte; received two days of coaching and feedback with Pete Pinheiro, Director, Financial Planning & Analysis, Laureate Education, Inc., and Kristen Keener, Director of Media Relations at Goucher College; and presented their plans in a formal interview with an external selection committee comprised of the following individuals:
- James McGuire, former board member, Laureate Education, Inc.
- Todd Benson, former board member, Laureate Education, Inc
- Marcos Simões, Director of Entrepreneurship Services, Endeavor Brazil
- Cusi Saco Chung, CEO/Co-Founder, Chill & Chic (Winning Team of the 2010 Global James McGuire Business Plan Competition)
- Guillermo Medina, Co-Founder, Chill & Chic (Winning Team of the 2010 Global James McGuire Business Plan Competition)
The Global James McGuire Business Competition was launched in 2007 by Douglas L. Becker, Chairman and CEO of Laureate Education, Inc. to honor Mr. James H. McGuire, a former member of Laureate's Board of Directors, and to foster entrepreneurship among students. A special thanks to university-based contest leaders, their internal and external selection committees, and the organizer of the Global James McGuire Business Plan Competition, Katherine Zuga, Community Outreach Manager, for the time and commitment to this very important award. For more information, please contact Katherine Zuga, Community Outreach Manager, at email@example.com.