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SOM students take part in 18th Reeves-Ellington Case Competition
December 1, 2011Tweet
A relatively unknown video website is trying to compete with industry leader YouTube, and needs to make the most impactful use of a $59.5 million private capital investment. That was the situation that student teams addressed during the finals of the 18th Reeves-Ellington Case Competition, on Nov. 14 at the Anderson Center.
The competition, held each year in the School of Management, is part of the Management 411 course. Student teams were required to analyze the problem, give a presentation detailing solutions and take questions from judges and the audience.
Brightcove, the company at the center of the Harvard Business School case, is a web-based provider of video content, founded in 2004 and re-launched two years later. Just weeks before this re-launch, however, Google agreed to buy YouTube, making Brightcove’s prime competitor an even stronger force to contend with.
BROWM Consulting – with team members Janine Bautista, Sean Muir, Kaitlyn Orr, Taylor Roth and Christine Warkenthien – earned first prize in the competition, calling for a reorganization of the company based on its two classes of products: personal and professional. The team argued that Brightcove should pursue rapid expansion into Western Europe and Japan, entering both markets within the span of 12 months.
“The changes that are occurring right now are putting pressure on Brightcove to adapt,” Muir said. “We want to make sure the firm will stay viable in the next year.”
Cline Consulting – with members Brian Cohen, Diana Karotseris, Brian Kenny, Allison Xie, and Anthony Schianodicola – said Brightcove should allocate the private capital infusion toward improving its user platform, aggressively advertising, and expanding into Europe and Asia. The team members said Brightcove’s unique selling point is that it would be more attractive to television networks looking to distribute content than a site such as YouTube, which is constantly removing pirated videos.
“(Networks) would be more likely to choose a company like Brightcove, which has high quality and a high level of professionalism,” Karotseris said.
The finalist team composed of Cathryn Cardillo, Julia Castaldi, Daniel Saber and Laura Siciliano said Brightcove should outsource the task of developing a user-friendly platform. Like the other teams, they recommended global growth; however, they went in a different direction, focusing first on making entries into Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia.
“It would be easier and more cost-effective to set up in countries where you don’t have to change the interface because of a different language,” Siciliano said.
Members of all teams will get their team photo displayed in the SOM lobby, and a notation placed on their academic transcripts. Robert Cline, lecturer of strategic management, coordinated the competition. Judges were Katherine Fitzgerald, partner with Binghamton-based law firm Hinman, Howard and Kattell; John Fitzsimmons, former CEO of Mang Insurance in Norwich, N.Y.; Steven Johnson ’86, managing partner for Riger Advertising in Binghamton, and Arthur Ventura ’93, senior vice president of integrated media sales for MSG Media in New York.