Management students face off in IBM Business Simulation

Winners and judges in the 2014 IBM Simulation. Top row, from left: Samuel Barbera, Dhiraj Gurung, Ashith Balakrishna Shetty, Jesher Dinakar, Rudra Subrata Basu and Alex Festaiuti. Bottom row, from left: Bill Deck III, Ricardo Romero, Wei Ting Tseng, Mengyi Zheng, Mayuri Sood and Thomas Campanelli.

Release Date: October 24, 2014 This content is archived.


BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Two teams emerged victorious after students in the University at Buffalo School of Management squared off to showcase their sales expertise, leadership skills and strategic abilities to a judging panel of IBM professionals.

Thirty-seven students competed on Oct. 18 in a daylong, IBM-sponsored business simulation designed to replicate real, fast-paced business challenges.

Rudra Subrata Basu, MS ’15; Jesher Dinakar, MS ’16; Alex Festaiuti ’15; Mayuri Sood, MBA ’15; Yahui Fan, MS ’15; Dhiraj Gurung, MBA ’16; Ricardo Romero ’15; Ashith Balakrishna Shetty, MBA ’15; Wei Ting Tseng, MS ’15; and Mengyi Zheng, MS ’15, made up the winning teams.

The winners received a certificate of achievement and IBM-branded gear.

“The IBM simulation is particularly useful because it gives students a chance to combine their analytical training with the interpersonal dynamics that confront every manager in the real world,” says Brian Becker, PhD, senior associate dean and professor of organization and human resources, who served as a faculty observer during the simulation.

Each team was given information that outlined the strengths and weaknesses of a mock technology company. Participants then created and executed sales strategies and made several simulated sales calls to try to sell their product to the judges.

The top teams from each of two competing groups were selected as overall winners based on financial performance (percentage of revenue growth in sales), strategy and execution, communication and professional ethics, and team collaboration.

“It was such a fast-paced day,” says Chris Paul Destito ’15, a student competitor. “Looking back, I see where we made mistakes and I can use this to help me learn and be successful in the real world.”

Four IBM professionals served as judges: Samuel Barbera, MBA ’83, account executive, business analytics; Thomas Campanelli, senior finance manager, corporate strategy; Bill Deck III, program director, finance transformation; and Jay Goodwyn, partner, IBM Global Services.

In addition to Becker, Mary Ann Rogers, adjunct assistant professor of organization and human resources, also served as a faculty observer.

The UB School of Management is recognized for its emphasis on real-world learning, community and economic impact, and the global perspective of its faculty, students and alumni. The school also has been ranked by Bloomberg Businessweek, the Financial Times, Forbes and U.S. News & World Report for the quality of its programs and the return on investment it provides its graduates. For more information about the UB School of Management, visit

The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, the largest and most comprehensive campus in the State University of New York. UB’s nearly 30,000 students pursue their academic interests through more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs. Founded in 1846, the University at Buffalo is a member of the Association of American Universities.

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Matthew Biddle
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School of Management