HONG KONG, August 21, 2014 – Team NZ from New Zealand has emerged winners at the annual FedEx Express/Junior Achievement International Trade Challenge (FedEx/JA ITC) Asia Pacific Finals in Hong Kong.
Shannon Metcalfe from Avondale College and Isabelle Stangl from Long Bay College in New Zealand beat 52 other students andimpressed the judging panel with their well thought-out and original business proposal. The finalists were tasked with creating a cohesive market entry strategy plan for a beauty product/service, which also addresses a social issue of Kenya. Team NZ's proposal of a waterless face wash solution, Eye Care, addresses Trachoma problem among Kenyans. While cleaning the face as well as conserving water for drinking, it can encourage beauty naturally at the same time.
This program aims to give young people from around the region a taste of the world of business and entrepreneurship. The Asia Pacific Finals involved 27 student teams from nine Asia Pacific markets, comprising Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
"We were overwhelmed when we won the right to represent New Zealand," said Shannon Metcalfe and Isabelle Stangl of Team NZ. "To have come out to Hong Kong and won the regional finals as well is a dream come true. The ITC program was highly stimulating and rewarding – we put in our best efforts and I feel that we got a real-world experience of the world of business which will be extremely valuable in our future careers. We also formed some lasting friendships with one another. We learnt a lot from our FedEx mentors, and I'd like to thank the organizers for a really rewarding experience."
The first runner-up was Team Aotearoa, represented by Amanda Ngo of Kings College and Benjamin Seelen of Nayland College in New Zealand. Their proposal involved a toothpaste that helps fighting against dental fluorosis, which is composing of ingredients safe for ingestion.
Team Avant Garde from the Philippines was named second runner-up. Teammates Deji Nela Agustin Eclarin and Lianne Gabrielle Ramirez Hernandez of O.B. Montessori Greenhills came up with the idea of taking henna tattoos to a next level by introducing Uzurink, which allows oppressed women in Kenya to look and feel beautiful without invasive tattooing or excessive makeup.
Fifty-four students competed in this year's FedEx/JA ITC Asia Pacific Finals and the judges were impressed by the teamwork, resourcefulness, creativity and entrepreneurial skills exhibited during both the regional competition and the earlier national contests. The judging panel of successful entrepreneurs and business leaders evaluated the students' proposals for attention to detail, creativity and professionalism during the development and execution phases of the competition.
"FedEx actively supports small businesses in the communities we serve, and promoting entrepreneurialism among young people reflects that," said David L. Cunningham Jr., president, FedEx Express Asia Pacific. "Some of the students in this year's competition could easily rank among the next generation of business leaders in a few years' time. I'm excited that FedEx has contributed to educating and inspiring almost 12,000 young people from around the region through this program since 2007. I congratulate team New Zealand on winning what was a fiercely competitive contest."
"Junior Achievement's goal in running this program is to provide young people with the inspiration and experience to succeed in the world of business," said Vivian Lau, president, JA Asia Pacific. "The International Trade Challenge functions as a springboard, providing students with the tools they need to translate creative, original ideas into viable business propositions by exposing them to real-world realities. The three-day Asia Pacific Finals, supported by FedEx volunteers, has been a great success and I look forward to continuing to work with FedEx on this valuable program."
Jointly organized by FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) and the world’s largest express transportation company, and JA Asia Pacific, a member of JA Worldwide, the FedEx/JA ITC provides an opportunity for students to understand business and entrepreneurship. This year, more than 90 FedEx employees volunteered as mentors, helping the students understand the concept of international trade and guiding them in the development of their plans. For more information, please visit www.facebook.com/AsiaPacificITC.
About the FedEx Express/Junior Achievement International Trade Challenge
Designed to foster business knowledge through practical teamwork exercises and classroom learning, the FedEx Express/Junior Achievement program comprises two key activities – the International Trade Workshops and the International Trade Challenge. To take part in the FedEx Express/Junior Achievement International Trade Challenge, students in teams of two have to develop a specific product or service and create an original international market entry strategy for a designated country. Through this process, students gain first-hand experience of what roles world trade, product distribution and sales play in a market environment. In addition to teamwork, participating students learn the basics of risk evaluation in the business world and gain confidence in their analytical ability.
About FedEx Express
FedEx Express is the world's largest express transportation company, providing fast and reliable delivery to more than 220 countries and territories. FedEx Express uses a global air-and-ground network to speed delivery of time-sensitive shipments, by a definite time and date with a money-back guarantee.
About FedEx Corp.
FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) provides customers and businesses worldwide with a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services. With annual revenues of $46 billion, the company offers integrated business applications through operating companies competing collectively and managed collaboratively, under the respected FedEx brand. Consistently ranked among the world's most admired and trusted employers, FedEx inspires its more than 300,000 team members to remain "absolutely, positively" focused on safety, the highest ethical and professional standards and the needs of their customers and communities. For more information, visit news.fedex.com.
About JA Asia Pacific
JA Asia Pacific is a member of JA Worldwide®, one of the largest global NGOs dedicated to addressing fundamental social and economic challenges of young people by educating and empowering them to transform their future and own their economic success.
JA Asia Pacific is dedicated to enabling and empowering youth to benefit from the region’s economic development, and to create a positive impact in their lives and communities. Through a dedicated volunteer network, JA Asia Pacific provides in school and after school programs for students which focus on three key content areas: work readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy. JA Asia Pacific envisions a future that young people dream big and, as a group, drive productive social and economic change.