RBC challenges students to propose next great financial
Next Great Innovator Challenge opens boardroom doors for
students with real-world business solutions
TORONTO, September 24, 2010 — Taking campus
ingenuity from the classroom to the boardroom, RBC is launching
its annual Next Great Innovator Challenge by calling on university
and college students to suggest an innovation that will be
critical to Canadian financial services in 2015.
2009/10 winning team,
4th Fibonacci (Schulich School of Business), accept
their prize, a cheque for $20,000
"We're working in a different landscape now and the
very way in which people approach financial services is constantly
evolving," said Avi Pollock, head, Applied Innovation
and Strategic Planning, RBC. "This year's challenge takes
this into consideration and we want to hear from students
what they think financial services should look like in five
years. It's not just about a good idea though: students must
consider how to implement their innovation."
Now in its fifth year, the RBC Next Great Innovator Challenge
has been established as the principal innovation contest open
to all Canadian students. Garnering nationwide participation
since its inception, the Challenge has attracted over 600
entries from schools across the country and $170,000 of prize
money has been awarded.
Team Dragonfly (Richard Ivey School of Business), present
Many ideas generated by competing students over the past
five years have been tested and refined in the RBC Applied
Innovation Lab, and some have been directly integrated into
the business. The winning submission from 2007, the VIBE interactive
personal banking workstation, is currently being piloted at
"From brainstorming potential innovations to presenting
in front of a panel of executives in a boardroom, the Next
Great Innovator Challenge has been an invaluable experience,"
said Jan-Lukas Wolf, member of the 2009/10 winning team from
the Schulich School of Business. "Not only did I gain
a wealth of knowledge, I also gained a competitive advantage
in getting a job upon graduation and launched my career at
RBC this summer."
This year's Challenge offers $45,000 in prize money and asks
Canadian college and university students to look five years
ahead to suggest an innovation that will be critical to Canadian
financial services in 2015. Entries will be evaluated by the
RBC Applied Innovation team and narrowed down to the top 15
submissions. These entries will then be reviewed by a panel
of RBC executives and the top four will be chosen as finalists.
The panel will also select five additional entries for the
peer voting selection process. A short synopsis of each peer
voting entry will be posted on www.nextgreatinnovator.com
with the leading vote-getting entry chosen as the fifth finalist
in January 2011.
Teams must register their intention to submit a proposal
online before November 8, 2010. All completed proposals must be submitted
by December 10, 2010.
The finalist teams will be awarded as follows: $20,000 to
the winning team, $10,000 to the second place team, and $5,000
to 3 runner-up teams. Finalists also receive an all-expense
paid trip to Toronto for the opportunity to meet with and
present their ideas to a judging panel that includes senior
RBC executives. The final evaluations and awards ceremony
will take place in March 2011 in Toronto.
For more information on the Next Great Innovator Challenge,
follow on Twitter
(@rbcinnovator) or become a fan on Facebook.
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Elyse Lalonde, RBC, Media Relations,