Triumph for PolyU students in Berlin’s global challenge

With their innovative business proposal, four students of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) have recently snapped the championship in the Retail Futures Challenge – an associated event of the World Retail Congress 2011 for fashion business schools around the world – in Berlin, Germany.

The team comprised four members, namely Miss Amanda Lee, Mr Brian Chow and Miss Kay Tsoi from PolyU’s Institute of Textiles and Clothing (ITC); and Mr Ricky Lo from PolyU’s School of Design. They were led by their academic supervisors, Dr Chris Lo, Mrs Paulene Hsia, Dr Ho Chu-po and Dr Robert Lau from ITC to make a trip to Berlin to join the global challenge at end of last September. Li & Fung has kindly sponsored their airfare and travelling expenses. Blanc de Chine, a Hong Kong based international luxury fashion brand proudly sponsored students’ outfits for their presentation on stage.

The team won the competition with a retail entry strategy for Blanc de Chine to Berlin’s flagship department store, KaDeWe. They planned an innovative launch for Blanc de Chine with sophisticated use of advanced mobile technologies and out-of-the-box ideas for introducing this fashion brand via social media to the European market. The PolyU team has ultimately outsmarted other top fashion business schools including New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology, London’s Fashion Retail Academy, Mumbai’s Welingkar Institute of Management, Milan’s IULM, and Tokyo’s Rikkyo University.

Not only has the PolyU team impressed the panel of distinguished judges, their performance was also highly commended by the congress attendees. After winning the laurel, the students were given precious opportunities of internships and job offers by international firms which include Adidas, Li & Fung, WPP, etc.

This year’s World Retail Congress attracted over 950 delegates from the biggest organisations in retail, including Li & Fung, Zara, Adidas, Marks & Spencer, etc. The annual event is the world’s largest business event in the retail industry.

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