Popular entrepreneurship challenge celebrates 10 years

On 12 April, students from Jönköping International Business School (JIBS) and the School of Engineering at Jönköping University (JU) will compete online in a 24-hour innovation race, for a prize pool of 130,000 SEK. This year is the 10th anniversary of the challenge, and the students will be asked to solve a real-life case presented to them by IKEA.

This year’s JIBS Entrepreneurship Challenge will take place from 12-14 April, and will be carried out online, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Every year, since 2011, a company has been invited to present a real-life business problem or ‘case’ that they need help to solve. For this, the 10th anniversary of the challenge, IKEA will be providing the business case for the competition.

“We are eager to see the outcome, and what these curious students will find out during the challenge in terms of finding innovative approaches on connecting social entrepreneurs with corporate businesses. Today at IKEA, we are joining hands with more and more social businesses, and we will learn so much from them. Just imagine if all our suppliers over time could work this way – becoming social businesses – and by economic empowerment taking responsibility for the vulnerable and marginalized. My hope is that the entire IKEA supply chain becomes even more inclusive; delivering to our economic, environmental and social agenda. Then we could also inspire other retailers to do the same. That’s what I call impact!” says Vaishali Misra, Business Leader, IKEA Social Entrepreneurship.

This year, the student teams will be competing in the JIBS Entrepreneurship Challenge digitally, as they did in 2020 at the beginning of the pandemic.

Teams made up of four students from JIBS and the School of Engineerng will have 24 hours to come up with a creative and inspiring solution to IKEA’s challenge, and prepare a pitch to sell their idea. After 24 hours, on the morning of 14 April, the teams will pitch their solutions, via digital link-up, to a jury made up of representatives from IKEA, JIBS, Science Park and local business leaders. Later that day, the jury will award the best solutions with a generous sum of money from the prize pool donated by Aktiestinsen’s Foundation (Aktiestinsens stiftelse för främjande av studenters entreprenörskap).

“IKEA is an ideal partner for this event. They represent products and services that people from all parts of the world and from every generation can recognise and relate to. They have very high standards when it comes to ethics, responsibility, and sustainability. And, not to underestimate, their entrepreneurial roots and their well-known business philosophy are much in line with the spirit of JIBS and Aktiestinsen,” says Jerker Moodysson, Dean of JIBS.

This popular competition is given by JIBS and Aktiestinsen’s Foundation in collaboration with JIBS Student Association’s (JSA) Entrepreneurship Academy. The purpose of the challenge is to stimulate creativity, entrepreneurship, interdisciplinary thinking, as well as foster team building and collaboration between students.

To follow updates during the challenge, follow the JIBS Entrepreneurship Challenge facebook page or instagram account @jibs_entrepreneurship.

For more information about the JIBS Entrepreneurship Challenge 2021 vsit https://ju.se/en/collaboration/events-and-conferences/events/jibs-entrepreneurship-challenge.html or contact Jonas.dahlqvist@ju.se