IE Business School recently hosted the exciting IE Business Case Competition, bringing together bright minds from across the globe to tackle a real-life business scenario. Students from eight prestigious business schools were invited to participate in the competition to solve a case study presented by Radisson Hotels Group.

The event featured participants from renowned global institutions BI Norwegian Business School Oslo, Universidad Panamericana de Mexico, Universidad San Francisco de Quito, Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, Babeș-Bolyai University, Maastricht University, University of Amsterdam, USC Marshall School of Business, and IE Business School. Students had a unique opportunity to apply their theoretical knowledge to a practical scenario in a competitive yet collaborative environment.

Gaining real-world experience

The competition centered around a real business case provided by Radisson Hotels Group, focusing on international expansion and the various challenges the hotel industry faces today. Students were required to consider several factors, including the impact of COVID-19, the company’s future transformation plans and evolving customer preferences.

The pressure was on, as students had only 24 hours to devise their solutions and present them to a panel of experts, including industry professionals and company representatives. This setup elevated the stakes, providing a platform for participants to showcase their skills under real-world pressure, mirroring the actual challenges faced in the business world.

The competition was more than just a test of knowledge; it was an avenue for students to hone essential skills valued in the business world, such as analytical thinking, effective communication, teamwork and performing under pressure. In addition, it offered a unique opportunity for participants to network, share insights and benchmark their skills against their peers globally.

Learning beyond the classroom

Henry Bradford, dean of IE Business School, emphasized the event’s broader significance. “It’s not just about solving business scenarios. It’s about fostering collaboration, pushing boundaries, and inspiring students to be the future leaders of the world,” he asserted. This sentiment was echoed by participants, who not only gained invaluable experience but also had the chance to receive direct feedback from industry insiders.

“The most exciting aspect of the business case that we analyzed was presenting it to employees from the company and hearing their feedback on our work,” commented IE Business School student Maya Radonjic Sabbagh. She noted that students then had to incorporate that feedback into their projects, providing an excellent learning opportunity.

Other students highlighted the competition’s role in enhancing their analytical, teamwork and problem-solving skills. Marie Pascale Oliger, also a student of IE Business School, reflected, “My experience was very insightful for my future career since I could improve my teamwork abilities.” Indeed, the ability to work effectively as a team was one of the key elements for success in the competition.

A platform for future success

The IE Business Case Competition. is more than just an academic event; it’s an opportunity to gain real-world experience and connections. By giving students a platform to apply what they learn in the classroom to real business problems, this event allows them to hone their skills for successful careers in the future. 

For those interested in participating in the competition next year, students and teachers have shared some advice. Firstly, prepare yourself by practicing case studies and, if you can, get to know your team so you can work together effectively. During the event, embrace the challenge of working collaboratively under pressure and make sure to absorb every learning opportunity. And of course, enjoy this unique experience!

This competition not only tests students’ ability to solve complex business problems but also prepares them for the future, enabling them to become the innovative leaders the world needs. Through initiatives like this, IE Business School provides a transformative, hands-on educational experience that equips students with the necessary skills to excel in the global business landscape.