RBC announces Next Great Innovator finalists
TORONTO, February 24, 2009 — RBC today announced
the five team finalists for The 2009 RBC Next Great Innovator
Challenge. All five finalists are from Ontario universities— the University of Waterloo, York University's Schulich
School of Business, Ryerson University and two teams from
the University of Toronto's Rotman School of Management.
"We received quality submissions from 24 schools across
Canada this year and these five finalists represent the best
of the best," says Avi Pollock, head, Applied Innovation,
RBC. "These five submissions truly reflect what this
challenge is all about - applying ideas that draw on their
diverse backgrounds, prior experiences and knowledge of the
global marketplace to a Canadian financial institution."
This year's Challenge asked university and college students
from across Canada to "Suggest an innovative concept,
product or process from another region or different industry
that Canadian financial services providers should adopt."
Working in teams of three or four, students were asked to
submit a unique and innovative idea related to the Challenge.
Here are the five team finalists and a synopsis of each of
their innovative ideas:
deriviateDesign (Rotman School of Management, U of T)
- Combine the online and real world in a training game to
increase Canadians' financial literacy and remove the fear
of facing financial matters.
Team ASPIRE (Schulich School of Business, York) -
Adapt a novel and very popular form of bond issue from the
U.K. to the Canadian financial services industry, blending
savings and investing with human behaviour.
Team RICE (MBET, University of Waterloo) - Apply banking
practices consistent with the principles of Islamic law to
Team Omega4 (Ted Rogers School of Management, Ryerson)
- Apply artificial intelligence techniques and a rich
user interface to create an intuitive, adaptive online virtual
Umatuma Asia (Rotman School of Management, U of T)
- Match RBC business client's services to the needs of other
RBC business clients and adapt innovative client services
models, similar to models used in Asian banks.
Proposals were evaluated by the RBC Applied Innovation team
and narrowed down to the top 15 submissions. The RBC Innovation
Council reviewed these 15 submissions and selected the top
four teams as finalists. The fifth finalist was chosen after
more than 20,000 votes were submitted through a peer-voting
selection process, in which the Council invited the public
to choose the last finalist from five Challenge submissions.
The national winner will be awarded $20,000, second place
will receive $10,000 and the three other finalists will receive
The top five teams will be evaluated by the RBC Next Great
Innovator judging panel consisting of some of RBC's top executives.
The final evaluation and awards ceremony will take place on
March 5, 2009, when RBC's Next Great Innovator will be announced.
All finalists will be featured on The Next Great Innovator
Challenge website at: www.nextgreatinnovator.com.
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For more information and to book interviews, please contact:
Jackie Braden, RBC, Media Relations, (416) 974-2124