York’s ‘Trendsetters’ reach the top in Paris


Above: Joyful “Trendsetters”, from left, Pooja Subramanian, Anna Waskow and Yasna Beheshti

Earlier this year, when a Schulich School of Business team of iBBA students won the 2004 National L’Oréal Marketing competition in Montreal, one of the members declared, “Paris is ours!” How right she was!

At the international finals of the competition held in Paris last week, this same Schulich iBBA team, the “Trendsetters”, took top honours at the International L’Oréal Marketing Award 2004. The three-person team of Yasna Beheshti, Pooja Subramanian, and Anna Waskow are all members of the first graduating class of the school’s groundbreaking International Bachelor of Business Administration (iBBA) Program.

The team’s win at the world level is all the more impressive given the stiff competition they faced: 3,300 students selected from 130 universities in 26 countries in Asia, Europe and the Americas.

Right: The winning team celebrates

The team was coached at various stages of the competition by Schulich marketing Professors Ajay Sirsi and Ashwin Joshi.

On June 10, Lindsay Owen-Jones, L’Oréal’s president and CEO and president of the award jury, personally congratulated the Schulich winners at Paris’ avant-garde Palais de Tokyo museum. In addition to their first place triumph, the Schulich trio, with the Brazilian team, won the Publicis Special Prize for Best Communication awarded by Maurice Levy, CEO of Publicis.

Schulich’s “Trendsetters” were recognized for their innovative marketing plan for a new line of men’s night-time skincare products, Biotherm Homme Rejuvenate, by a panel of judges. On the panel were Owen-Jones; François Vachey, executive vice-president of human resources; Gilles Weil, president of the Luxury Products Division of Hervé Navallou and general manager of Biotherm International; and Publicis’s Levy.

The judges recognized the “Trendsetters” team for their immediately marketable product line, a creative communication plan entitled “Tonight Starts Tomorrow’s Confidence”, and their strategic view of the men’s market. “The L’Oréal Marketing Award is a huge adventure and it is wonderful to see you sharing our passion,” said Owen-Jones. “The competition is an incredible opportunity to have a bird’s-eye view into our company and see what it really does, and it is a great pleasure for us to share with you what we do.”

The aim of L’Oréal’s marketing recruitment game was for students to put their creative skills to the test in a real business setting by presenting a complete international marketing strategy, new product range, packaging and communication campaign for Biotherm Homme.

Right, from left: Subramanian, Beheshti and Waskow show their team spirit

Since the competition’s launch in 1993, more than 14,300 young male and female business students have participated.

For more information on the L’Oreal Marketing Award 2004 click here.