NUS MBA 24 February 2014

Blue-chip MBA teams compete to deliver best returns

NUS MBA students Abhishek Khandelwal, Nilendra Weerasinghe and Jiang Mingzhi have been crowned grand champions at the NUS Asian MBA Stock Pitch Competition 2014, beating eight other teams from some of Asia’s best business schools.

Winning team from NUS MBA with their champion's trophy.

Winning team from NUS MBA with their champion’s trophy.

The team’s ‘buy’ call on shipping and transportation firm Neptune Orient Lines Limited (NOL) and strong presentation skills impressed judges during the Grand Final on Friday, 21st January. “It’s good to win (and even) better to win at home!” said an ecstatic Weerasinghe after the results were announced. In addition to the championship, the team of first-year MBA candidates also walked away with $10,000 in cash. The team attributed their success to good team work. Half in jest, Khandelwal added that a second contributing factor was that the team had hardly slept, having stayed up until five in the morning. Yet despite the lack of sleep, all three said they would head straight out for drinks to celebrate.

Organised by the School’s Centre for Asset Management Research and Investments (CAMRI) in partnership with Cornell University’s Parker Centre, the competition saw participants showcase equity research and stock-picking skills before a panel of judges from the asset management industry. “Over the years, this competition has evolved to be of great value to industry partners, recruiters, and most importantly, to the students in the region,” said CAMRI director Professor Joseph Cherian. “They get a taste of the reality of working as asset managers who often face hard-hitting questions from their clients.”

Runner-up from SP Jain Institute of Management & Research.

Runner-up from SP Jain Institute of Management & Research.

Participants had full access to a suite of world-class portfolio analytics and analysis tools from CAMRI’s Investment Management & Trading Lab, and underwent a Bloomberg training session as part of their preparations. The format of the competition was also structured to match the fast-paced, high-demand and high-pressure work environments of asset managers in the real world.

In the preliminary round of the competition, participating teams had to recommend strategies for stock investment in companies, with the three highest-scoring teams advancing to the final round. Judges included industry representatives from JP Morgan Investment Management, Allianz Investment Management and Novatera Capital.

Indian Institute of Management (Ahmedabad) and SP Jain of Mumbai were the other two finalists, with the latter emerging as runner-up.