The Competitive Edge : SIBM Pune Students And Company Case Competitions


‘Interrobang?!’ is ITC’s campus engagement initiative which lets students from top Indian B-schools engage with the company through a unique and interactive learning experience. It aims to provide students an experience where they can ask/interrogate senior leaders at ITC to seek their views on different managerial challenges faced by them in day-to-day life and test their own budding managerial skills on such problems.

The entire experience has three faces. As a run-up to the event, Interroquiz, a daily online quiz is hosted on ‘Hub n Scope’, ITC’s talent page on Facebook. The Interrojam sessions give students an opportunity to dialogue with ITC’s business leaders on their brand stories, people practices and supply-chain processes.

Finally, the Interrobang Case Challenge provides students the platform to plan and conceptualise different and innovative solutions to real life problems faced by top ITC management. It is conducted across top-notch B-schools in India. Students of the winning teams also receive a Pre-Placement Interview (PPI) opportunity with the Company. Students from SIBM Pune have won the competition for the Western region: Abhinav Magapu, Jyoti Prakash Mallick, Swati Prasanna, Vaibhavi Belsare from MBA II, HR.


Mahindra war room

Mahindra War Room is a competition organised by Mahindra Group for engaging top notch B-school talent to work on live business issues. This year’s National Finalists from SIBM Pune were team ‘Game set Match’, consisting of Aastha Chawla, Abhishek Nair, Ashima Kandari Karan Kaul from MBA II, Marketing.

Aastha tells us, “I think the key to our success was identifying our resource pool and utilising it optimally. Our mentor from Mahindra helped us revisit and refine our campaign from time to time which again worked very well for us and kept us motivated all along.”

Adds Ashima, “It took a lot of perseverance and we even modified and added to some of our ideas as we went along. Finally, our hard work paid off and our campaign was so successful that we got a press release on Afaqs. Mahindra War Room has been, and will surely continue to be a journey of learning, team-work, dedication and perseverance – one that I feel truly proud to be part of.”

Abhishek Nair sums it up by saying, “Nothing good in life comes easy! And the same holds true for Mahindra War Room. I humbly say that we emerged as the winners during the campus evaluation and we hope to bring back the laurels of last year by putting in our very best efforts.”

The winning team from each campus will be flown down to Mumbai, where they will present their strategies to a jury comprising of Mr. Anand Mahindra, the Group Executive Board and a number of eminent Mahindra managers.


Deloitte Maverick

We spoke to Debopam Das, National Finalist of Deloitte Maverick, on his experience at the competition. “Deloitte Maverick was an exhilarating experience, with over 2200 teams from across the country participating this time. The competition consisted of a shortlisting round, a regional round, further subdivided into a boardroom round and stage round, followed by the grand finale. In this kind of competition, it’s important to start out with a good team and ours being a cross-specialisation one, with members from both Finance and Operations, was strong in this area. Every round of the competition had a separate case-study on a different sector, with tightly constrained time-frames making it even harder. It took burning the midnight oil to get through the Regionals and reach the Grand Finale, having competed against twenty of the best teams in the West zone, including those from IIM-A, SP Jain, NITIE, JBIMS and the likes.”

The Grand Finale was a two-day event in Deloitte India office at Hyderabad. The case was designed around contemporary HR issues, and pushed the teams out of their comfort zone. Moreover, not only was the time-frame to solve the caselet and prepare the presentation a brief 6 hours, the deliverables were being constantly changed to create further stress on the teams. “Ultimately, the experience of presenting in the Deloitte Hyderabad boardroom in front of the top brass of Deloitte was truly exciting and exhilarating. Win or lose, the learning and the experience gained from this event will definitely help us in our future career.”

Team “Few but Ripe” for the event consisted of: Akshay Mittal and Sai Kripashankar from MBA II, Finance and Debopam Das MBA II, Operations.


Godrej LOUD

Godrej LOUD is a platform where passionate individuals are given an opportunity to express and fulfil their dreams. Godrej believes that if people are really passionate about something, then they will bring that passion to work. This is why Godrej LOUD winners get Rs. 1.5 lacs as well as mentoring and support to fulfil their dreams. Not just this, the winners also get a pre-placement summer offer at Godrej Industries Gurukul program. During the finale, participants have a chance to interact with the Godrej leadership as well as to present their dreams to a panel headed by Nisaba Godrej.

“As a LOUD winner, I will be visiting Berklee College of Music in Boston this summer to attend a summer course on production and composition techniques”, says Navonil Datta Datta (MBA I Marketing), Godrej LOUD winner from SIBM Pune.

For Nansi Mahajan Mahajan (MBA I Marketing), also our Godrej LOUD winner, the dream is to design aids for daily living for people with impaired limb functions.



SAB Miller’s Brew-a-Career Season 2 was another one of the many challenging competitions that students at SIBM Pune work upon. “Calling our team The Beer Rockers, we started off with a primary survey in a few local pubs. A few days were also spent in front of SIBM’s Bloomberg terminals researching the overall beer industry. At last we made it through as campus finalists, after which we added further details to our solution by burning some more midnight beer…er, oil. Finally, we presented our ideas with a passion and conviction and that stood out and led us the National Finals. Although we didn’t make it as the winning team in the finals, the entire experience itself was a highly enriching one, both in terms of the learning and the enjoyment!” said Hullas Arora MBA I, HR. The team consisted of MBA I students, Hullas Arora, Shruti Mehta, Shreyasi Mehta and Rohan Doshi.


Telenor Youth Forum

Telenor Youth Forum 2015 is a global platform for young opinion-shapers to come together and engage in dialogue with luminaries and leaders of different fields on the transforming world we live in and on our digital future – truly the social and professional experience of a lifetime. This year’s center-slogan was “Education for All”. The task was to leverage technology to improve education and to ensure access to this knowledge. The national winners would be selected to represent India for dialogues of global impact along with youth from Telenor’s 13 markets across the Nordic region, Europe and Asia during the Nobel Peace Prize event in Oslo, Norway in December 2015.

8 students from SIBM Pune (7 seniors and 1 junior) were shortlisted for the Maharashtra-Goa regional round, out of a total of 13 finalists from this region. Vinayy Bahety, second-year MBA student was one of two winners from the regional round and is now a finalist for the national round.



Dineout is part of Times Internet, a table reservation service that enables diners to get tables at their favourite restaurants, along with discounts, cash-backs and much more. The Dineout Marketing Challenge was open for students across B-Schools in India.

A qualifying Round to suggest marketing strategies for growth and to suggest 3 growth hacks/marketing strategies to make the Dineout app viral with a cost/benefit analysis of each was followed by a round in which teams needed to suggest a detailed execution plan for each strategy to attain disruptive growth. The Grand Final of the event was to attain crazy growth via smart execution. “It was a great experience and we realised that what they wanted was an awareness campaign for the app, so our plan was a holistic one that involved raising awareness via CSR, social media promotion as well as a BTL activity all tied into a marketing campaign” explains the team who consists of Amartojit Basu, Shekhar Rai and Devesh Kumar from MBA II, Marketing.


SIBM Pune Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, Pune is Constituent of SYMBIOSIS INTERNATIONAL (DEEMED UNIVERSITY). Established in 1978, a premier B School in India, SIBM Pune is consistently ranked among the top 10 B Schools of the country. SIBM Pune is recognized for its excellence in academics and its valuable contributions to industry and society and students.