Missouri Southern team wins NASBITE competition

A hand-picked group of business students from Missouri Southern recently claimed the top prize in the recent NASBITE International Student Case Competition.  

The team, which consisted of students Holly Loncarich, Viktoryia Johnson, Aliza Fahle, Cynthia Salas, Joshua Foster and advisor Dr. Chris Moos, won for the second year in a row. Last year, students from Southern won the first ever competition put on by NASBITE, an organization that focuses on educating people about international trade and which consists of college professors and international trade professionals.  

Desiring to foster real-world business experience, the competition is application-based. This year the students were required to develop a strategy for Cleveland Whiskey, an American company, to enter the market in Singapore.  

Competing against 30 other schools, only the top three teams would be selected to present their findings to a panel of judges.  

The competition started as early as last September, with the bulk of the necessary information being released by the judges in October. After forming the team and receiving their assignment for the competition, the business majors quickly started work on what amounted to a 40-page paper with detailed plans concerning everything from the suggested marketing and label design to the legal and political environment in Singapore.  

Loncarich, senior management and international business major, emphasized the diligence, unique knowledge, and teamwork that each member brought to the group.  

“Technically, on paper I was the group leader, but all five of us contributed equally to the case,” said Loncarich. “We split it up based upon what they were wanting. Josh focused on the cultural aspects, Viktoryia and Cynthia did the marketing and the social media promotion, I did the logistical and number stuff, and Aliza did the opportunity assessment and strategic stuff.”  

After receiving word that they had been one of the three qualifiers for the presentations to take place in Newport, Rhode Island in early April, the team put together a PowerPoint slideshow to highlight the findings of their research.  

Three of the students in the group, Johnson, Foster, and Loncarich, were responsible for the actual presentation of the PowerPoint to the judges.  

Johnson, a senior human resources management major, said, “I was super nervous for the presentation. We practiced it every day in the hotel.”  

That practice no doubt paid dividends as the judges picked Missouri Southern as the champion over teams from Youngstown State University and the University of Northern Iowa.