The 2014 PRMIA Risk Management Case Competition took place over 3 rounds with the international final round in Toronto on February 28th. Competitors were given two real world cases to analyze and make recommendations to correct risk management deficiencies, one for the screening and regional round, and a second for the final round. Teams had to submit an executive summary and give a 20 minute presentation explaining and defending their recommendations. The seven finalists in Toronto had advanced from a pool of 91 teams across Canada, USA and UK.
David Gontovnick – 2013/14 MSc Finance
Peter Mak – 2013/14 MSc Finance
Viacheslav (Slava) Trefilin – 2013 BBA (Finance)
Wing-Kan Chung – 4th year BBA (Finance/Econ)
The stage for this competition was set a week before the presentation when our team had to submit the slides and executive summary. We somehow managed to balance midterms, Wing-Kan’s TA schedule, and even Peter getting married leading up to the due date to complete our analysis.
Peter, Wing-Kan and I were looking forward to a few days rest before preparing for the presentation but Slava had other ideas. Not 3 hours had passed from the time we submitted the documents and he had already emailed us a link to a blog post about one of our competitors from New York saying “think we can relax now? Wrong!”
As much as we may have resented Slava at the time, his determination motivated us to put in the extra effort and our presentation really came together in time for the big day. We managed to deliver a great presentation but we weren’t sure what to expect from the judging panel during the Q&A. Our recommendations were picked apart by a managing director at Credit Suisse in New York but we were able to think on our feet and respond to each of his questions, leaving with our heads held high after shaking hands with all the judges.
Relieved that the presentation was over, we were able to enjoy a speech from a VP at the World Bank over lunch and to meet with our fellow competitors throughout the day. After the closing panel discussion on current issues in risk management, the judges returned to announce the winner and runner-up team. We were pleasantly surprised to hear SFU had finished a close 2nd – behind the same team from New York that Slava had warned us about!
Our team would like to sincerely thank Jan Simon for his mentorship and Mark Wexler and the Beedie administration for their support.
David is a current student of the MSc Finance program and holds a BBA in finance from SFU. He has three years professional experience as a commercial insurance underwriter at Intact Financial Corp in Vancouver. David will be graduating in December 2014 and hopes to pursue a career in capital markets risk management.