James An presenting at Berkeley Skydeck

James An presenting at Berkeley Skydeck

In yet another demonstration of the talents of Berkeley students and the many opportunities provided by the program, students were granted the prospect to take the skills developed in the classroom into industry and offer fresh perspectives to major multinational corporations. In the course UGBA 190T: Open Innovations in Business taught by Professor Solomon Darwin, Associate Director of the Program in Open Innovation, students were challenged to address real world business issues and to assess the current state of the business models of several Fortune 500 level firms about how they could help provide open innovation solutions to challenges in their current business paradigms. Students were charged to address these concerns while working alongside executives throughout the creative process, rising to this challenge in a final pitch competition among student teams to the executives of these firms.

The student team working with Standard Chartered Bank proved particularly innovative and effective in their presentation and approach in assessing the needs of the firm and offering solutions and particular and specific avenues the company could further cultivate. Executives were so impressed with the student team that they planned to explore the project in a context beyond the classroom.

Standard Chartered Bank Student Team

(L-R) James An, David Motamed, Caleb Linden, Stanford Stickney, Todd Schofield, Jeremy Fiance, and Solomon Darwin.

Executives of Standard Chartered invited James An, Jeremy Fiance, Caleb Linden, David Motamed, and Stanford Stickney to present a refined presentation, which was well received and led to further development of the concept beyond the classroom. As clearly stated by Mr. Todd Schofield, Managing Director, SC Studios,

The Open Innovation and Business Models course at Berkeley Haas has been a valuable experience for Standard Chartered Bank. The students utilized open innovation approaches to address our business challenges. We are a global bank and have operated for over 150 years in some of the world’s fastest-growing markets. We lead the way in Asia, Africa and the Middle East, and innovation is essential to our expansion and sustainability. The students not only came up with a business model, but also built a prototype of an app (a proof of concept) that goes beyond a PowerPoint pitch. The Haas students were given an opportunity to present to our C-suite level executives which resulted in internship offers to take their ideas further to benefit the Bank. We look forward to working with Haas students on an ongoing basis to solicit new ideas in the changing landscape.” As Berkeley students continue to innovate and leverage the full resources of the Garwood Center and the unique aspects of the culture and learning environment that UC Berkeley has to offer, it is certain that collaborations of this nature will continue in the future and demonstrate the institution’s ideals of bringing together students and business professionals into mutually beneficial relationships that allow for further creativity and innovation.