JSU Business Student Wins International Strategy Competition


by Skyler Kasinger

Wesley WaybrightWesley Waybright, a student in the College of Business and Industry at Jax State, was named Grand Champion in an international business strategy competition that included universities from around the world.

The project started as part of a semester-long Global Business Strategy Simulation built into a CBA 469: Business Policy and Strategy Course taught by Dr. Dan Mertens, professor of management. The activity gives students hands-on experience managing a company by evaluating the market, making strategic decisions and responding to competitors.

“Students must utilize a full array of industry statistics, company operating reports and financial statements, and an assortment of benchmarking data and competitive intelligence of rival firms,” Mertens said. “Students draw together the information and lessons of prior business courses, consolidating knowledge about the different aspects of running a company. It is excellent practice for future managerial leaders.”

Waybright and his teammates often finished in the top 100 (out of 2,000+) teams worldwide during the semester-long simulaton in Earnings Per Share, Return on Average Equity, and Stock Price. As the winning team in their industry, they were invited to the Best-Strategy Invitational. Held over winter break, Waybright was the only student on his team able to take part in the two-week tournament, where he competed solo against teams from schools such as the University of South Africa and Toronto Metropolitan University.

“Wesley did an amazing job charting a long-term direction for his company – setting and adjusting strategic and financial objectives, crafting a strategy, and adapting to changing industry and competitive conditions,” Mertens said.

Held each semester, the global competition is open and utilized in college business classrooms throughout the world. At Jax State, CBA 469 is the capstone course offered to business seniors who have completed most of their studies within the college, satisfying several pre-requisites. Dr. Mertens uses the simulation competition each semester as an opportunity for students to put their knowledge into practice, taking accountability for their company’s performance. 

“Our student-managed companies consistently rank in the Top 100 worldwide throughout each semester,” he said. “This is a testament to the well-rounded, superior business education they acquire from all CBI faculty at Jax State.”