During the spring semester 85 students taking part in the course General Logistics II taught by Prof. Julia Bendul participated in a case study competition organized in cooperation with BLG Logistics Group, Hansa Meyer Global Holding GmbH and Röhlig Logistics, three leading Logistics Service Providers (LSP) based in Bremen. The main goal of the case study project was to enable students to apply their theoretical knowledge of the management of logistics service providers to real problems and to develop their own business model and business plan.
June 1, 2015
Bachelor students from all majors and all all years formed 14 interdisciplinary groups with four to seven team members and worked intensively to solve a real problem faced by the LSPs over the course of 3 months. The task for the students related to the difficulties of finding local qualified personnel in the range of upper middle management, in particular employees with leadership experiences in the field of logistics, whilst at the same time expanding overseas.
The project started with a kick-off meeting with Mr. Jürn Schmidt, Managing Director of Hansa Meyer Global Holding during which he explained the central tenets of the problem and the limitations of existing solutions. A few weeks later the students presented their business model ideas in front of company representatives. After submitting further questions and conducting interview with company representatives the students presented the implementation plan of their business idea. In five-minute pitches in front of potential investors – in this case Jürn Schmidt, Managing Director of Hansa Meyer Global Holding Christian Marnetté, Managing Director at BLG LOGISTICS GROUP, and Hans-Ludger Körner, Chief Financial Officer at Röhlig Logistics GmbH & Co. KG – the participants had to sum up all the necessary information, team spirit and presentation skills to convince them to invest in their start-up ideas.
The winning team was Rootlink made up of Paul Ladwig (Germany), Varvara Zubko (Belarus), Bushra Kamran (Pakistan), Ali Qureshi (Pakistan) – all studying logistics and Damla Arman (Germany) who is a 1st year student in Global Economics and Management. The teams Congregate and Think Tank, who came second and third in the contest, also mirrored the transdisciplinary and diversity at Jacobs University.
The company representatives involved were impressed by the performance of the students. Christian Marnetté, Managing Director at BLG LOGISTICS GROUP in Bremen, said: “It was a great pleasure and honor for me to be part of this very multi-national and multi-faculty event in the International Logistics Department of Jacobs University. Great to see how practical and open minded education and practical know how is transferred nowadays at the campus. The 14 very motivated teams gave their utmost to tackle the tasks we gave to them and worked hard to convince us counterparts from the Senior Management of the supporting Logistics Companies. Overall we saw a broad variety of feasible ideas and impressive presentation styles and it was not easy to agree about the TOP 3 Finalist.”
Jürn Schmidt agreed: “From my perspective, I’d like to stress the commitment of the students and the – at least for me – surprisingly pretty much realistic suggested solutions they presented. In total, this was far more than what I had expected. We now would like to work on a final draft that could finally be put into practice or which can be used as a professional service in the field of university-based consulting.”
Hans-Ludger Körner was also impressed by the students’ performance and their ability to dive into both, to tackle the case’s task and at the same time to apply theoretical knowledge learnt in class. He said: “Since most groups were mixed in terms of nationalities and majors, they came up with different and truly multi-perspective approaches, combining their regional knowledge and their different backgrounds from several majors. For me, this was an example of what Jacobs University stands for – not just in theory, but in practice.”