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Monopoly ’23: A Day of Strategic Alliances and Business Resilience

The Ashoka Business Club organised the second edition of Monopoly: an inter-university mergers and acquisitions competition for the Haryana and Delhi NCR university circuits

On the 28th of October 2023, InfoEdge Centre for Entrepreneurship’s Ashoka Business Club ran Monopoly ’23, an inter-university event centred around mergers and acquisitions. This was the second time the club successfully executed the event, garnering participation from 20+ colleges across Delhi NCR and a thoroughly vetted team from Ashoka as well. The sponsors for the event included Indian Oil (title sponsor), Sipp (beverage sponsor) and Mrs Bector’s Group’s Cremica and Zoet’s (refreshment sponsors and partners).

The aim of the competition since it was conceptualised last year, and in its second year, has been to help students understand the nuances of Mergers and Acquisitions while still framing it as an accessible topic, which can be made easy through hands-on learning experiences like Monopoly.

The competition took place in three rounds. The first was around growth strategy, where teams had to analyse the company profiles provided to them to identify their weaknesses and based on what seemed most viably workable, create a pitch on how they’d fill certain gaps in their functioning to grow.

Second was the Mergers and Acquisitions round, where the teams (assigned tags of “good” and “bad”) were meant to mingle and network and rally in an unmoderated session form unofficial alliances and then move into the moderated section of the round, where companies either rejected or accepted another company’s bid to merge or be acquired. At the end of this round, merged and acquired companies had to create a deck explaining why it is a mutually beneficial arrangement.

The final round was the crisis round, where each company was given a situation where a seriously damaging event had occurred. Halfway through, a detailed, surprise industry-wide crisis was introduced, regarding a rupture in data security which led to certain RBI guideline alterations and implicating several companies present inside the competition. At the end of this round, teams had to deliver ways to overcome this crisis.

The judges present were Ayushi Malik (Ashoka Alum working on M&A – Corporate Development and Business Strategy at NIIT in the CEO’s office) and Arnav Gupta (Ashoka Alum and incoming Associate Consultant at Bain). The judging was based on objective grading and subjective grading, with a rubric provided and a panel of ABC members aiding the judges.

The day started at 10:30 am and went on till 6:30 pm, with breaks for snacks, networking, lunch and for attending the Entrepreneurship Haat, organised by InfoEdge Centre for Entrepreneurship as part of the Entrepreneurship Weekender ‘23. We wrapped up the closing ceremony with an amazing performance by a student band “One Step Higher”, assisted by our music Society Vistaar, along with a short feedback session and finally, the prize distribution.

(Written by Tarini Kochhar and Arnav Mehra undergraduate students from the batch of 2024 at Ashoka University)

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