MIMs from the September 2016 intake share their story of how they beat out 71 student teams!

In November 2016, we entered the franz. competition started by Camp Beckenbauer as team PowerPlay 8.  franz. is the first international student competition in sports, where students around the world have the opportunity to bring fresh ideas to shape the future of sports. The competition began in this fall and over 250 students and 71 student teams had to create an innovative idea around this year’s topic “How to capture the Chinese consumer for your favorite sport?”


From Day 1 when we starting meeting and working on this project, we immediately set up some rules: let’s have fun, put our sport passion into this project and most importantly, be ready to give up on some drinks to finish working on our presentation and maximize our chances of winning (#GoHardOrGoHome). We were also very keen from the first stage to develop a disruptive and creative idea in order to stand out when the jury would review our presentation.


After some fun and intense brainstorming sessions, our team PowerPlay 8 decided to pitch with an innovative idea: a technological solution to grow Ice Hockey in China. Yes Ice Hockey sounded like a huge challenge for us, especially as Football and Basketball have already penetrated the Chinese sport markets. Beijing will be hosting the Winter Olympics in 2022 and the government is investing tremendously to be competitive in Ice Hockey. Our idea centers around integrating a performance tracking chip into the Ice Hockey stick and connecting it with the PowerPlay 8 app.


The application doubles as a way to track individual performance on the ice, play virtual ice hockey games against other users, and offers Ice Hockey specific coaching tips centered around team play. We had some courses in the beginning of the year on Technology & Innovation Management and had discussed about new connected objects. We also did a lot of research and connected with sports experts from the IE Sport Management Club to develop the value proposition of our technology.


The competition encompassed two rounds, consisting of creating and explaining our innovative idea through first a powerpoint presentation and secondly a video. After being selected for the 1st and 2nd rounds in January, we were then invited to compete in the Finals at the Global Summit final in Berlin against two other student teams (from London Business School and Hong-Kong School of Business). The event was very exciting and represented a fantastic opportunity to present our idea in front of some of the leading experts in sports, including the famous Franz Beckenbauer! The presentation consisted of first showing our video and then giving a brief presentation on our idea. Due to our hard work, creativity, and will to succeed we were selected as the winning team at the Global Summit! We received a large check, a certificate, and recognition for our innovative idea to shape the world of sports!!


We encourage future students to keep an eye out for the franz. competition next year to Break the Ice as we did in Berlin!


All the best from PowerPlay 8!!

–Stephanie Posada, Shakee Messina, Matt Fazekas, and Meryl Zucco

IE MIM, September 2016 intake