Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) and Boston University School of Management today announced that students from Stanford Graduate School of Business won top honors in the third annual International Tech Strategy Business Case Competition.
The grueling 24-hour case analysis invitational featured eight international teams and eight US teams reputed to be among the best in combined technological and business savvy. Ericsson's sponsorship of the competition is in support of what the company calls "digital natives," the generation that has grown up in the online, digital world.

The first place team from Stanford was awarded the top prize of $25,000. The team captain was Daniel Murillo, and the team members were Alex Salazar, Dafina Ivanova Toncheva and Gabriel Efstathios Tavridis. Placing second with a $15,000 award was the student team from the Kenan-Flagler Business School of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The third place finishers were from London Business School, and they shared a $5,000 prize. The students from the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin placed fourth and won $2,500. Hans Vestberg, Executive Vice President and CFO, Ericsson, presented the award to the winning students.

The challenge for the MBA students was to build a case for a comprehensive solution for the telecom industry. Specifically, they were provided a real market challenge facing a leading Ericsson telecom customer (Vodafone) in the fast evolving world of multimedia -where technology, content and services come together in an all-communicating mobile and Internet-enabled environment.

Stephen Newman, Program Director for Executive Development at Ericsson, said: "When Ericsson decided to sponsor this competition, we determined early on that this should be a broad Ericsson case and that it would be judged by our representatives from across all Ericsson Business Units worldwide. Our team of judges was not disappointed. Because these students are truly global citizens and were raised digitally during the explosion of mobile and Internet technologies, we couldn't have worked with a more influential group of young people who will shape the future of our industry."

The captain of the Stanford team, Daniel Murillo, said, "We presented a vision where people have access to all sorts of media and digital services at any time, from anywhere and on any type of digital device, including fixed and mobile." 

Associate Dean of Boston University's School of Management, John Chalykoff, said: "The next generation of CEOs will need cutting-edge technology education. This competition focuses on technology strategy; the convergence of telecommunications with the media and entertainment industries offers all kinds of exciting possibilities, which is a perfect fit for this case competition. And there is no better industry leader than Ericsson to provide a real life case."

As the only international tech strategy business case competition featuring MBA students from the world's top business schools, the competition broke new ground this year with its most internationally diverse cohort ever: 21 nationalities were represented.

Judges of the final round were: Arun Bhikshesvaran, Vice President of Strategy and CTO, North America, Ericsson;Ingemar Naeve, Head Market Unit Iberia and President Global Customer Unit, Telef√≥nica Ericsson; and Peter Seremetis, Global Head of CIO Relationship Management, Reuters America.  Mr. Bhikshesvaran said: "For Ericsson, this was an outstanding opportunity to listen to some fresh thinking about our industry, our strategic issues and our future. The competition brought together an incredibly diverse student body that has been educated to work globally in all ways: in terms of using technology, cross-cultural sensitivity and understanding. And that's what Ericsson is all about; not only in terms of the way we work, but also in the way we produce and deliver technology and services. It was a perfect match and our CEO Carl-Henric Svanberg looks forward to meeting the winning team."

The remaining twelve teams that took part in the competition were:
Boston University School of Management
EGADE Tecnologico de Monterrey, Mexico
Eller College of Management at the University of Arizona
Harvard Business School
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
IESE Business School at the University of Navarra, Spain
Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta
Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University
Queen's School of Business, Ontario, Canada
Seoul National University, Korea
Sloan School of Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (the 2007 winners)
Stockholm School of Economics
Ericsson is the world's leading provider of technology and services to telecom operators. The market leader in 2G and 3G mobile technologies, Ericsson supplies communications services and manages networks that serve more than 185 million subscribers. The company's portfolio comprises mobile and fixed network infrastructure and broadband and multimedia solutions for operators, enterprises and developers. The Sony Ericsson joint venture provides consumers with feature-rich personal mobile devices.
Ericsson is advancing its vision of 'communication for all' through innovation, technology, and sustainable business solutions. Working in 175 countries, more than 70,000 employees generated revenue of USD 27.9 billion (SEK 188 billion) in 2007. Founded in 1876 and headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden, Ericsson is listed on the Stockholm, London and NASDAQ stock exchanges.
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About Boston University School of Management
Founded in 1913, Boston University School of Management develops tomorrow's leaders through curricula that distinctively fuse the art, science, and technology of business. The School offers several undergraduate and graduate degrees, including the unique MS
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  • MBA equips future leaders with the skills necessary to build successful organizations in a shrinking, digitized world.  All School of Management students graduate with a business specialty, but they all have an unusually broad approach to business that enables them to understand and deal with the complex interrelationships within organizations. The School also offers a range of executive education opportunities. For more information, visit