BUSINESS

Young entrepreneurs from New Zealand shine at the FedEx Express/Junior Achievement Regional International Trade Challenge

Monday 26 August 2013, 2:09PM
By PR-ink
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AUCKLAND, August 26, 2013—Team New Zealand, represented by James Rankin from Westlake Boys High School and Loren McCarthy from Tauranga Girls High School, have placed first runner-up in the FedEx Express/Junior Achievement International Trade Challenge (FedEx/JA ITC) Regional Finals in Hong Kong.

The three-day competition saw the finalist teams from nine Asia-Pacific markets tasked with addressing the global issue of recycling materials by developing a new innovative product or service for the Argentinian market using reused jeans.

Team New Zealand’s Loren and James devised a plan to utilise a typical shoe found in Argentina called Espadrilles. It’s a shoe that was traditionally worn by the lower socio economic sector and is currently popular with the middle and upper class.  The pair did a business model of co-created value where consumers could buy a pair of shoes and the price would subsidise a second pair of shoes to be given to people in the poorest areas of Argentina. 

Among the 27 student teams from nine markets including Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, a student team from the Philippines was awarded the title of Entrepreneur of the Year, with Team Hong Kong placing second runner-up.

This year 54 students, aged between 15 to 19, won a place to represent their markets in the FedEx/JA ITC Regional Finals by confidently demonstrating their teamwork, resourcefulness, creativity and entrepreneurial skills during the local market competitions. At the Regional Finals the panel of judges, comprising successful entrepreneurs and business leaders, assessed the students on their attention to detail, creativity and professionalism in developing and executing a business entry strategy.

“FedEx actively supports entrepreneurship. We are proud that since 2007 the International Trade Challenge has educated and inspired more than 9,900 young people in the region, who will be our next generation of Asian entrepreneurs,” said David L. Cunningham, Jr., president, FedEx Express Asia Pacific. “Our world is changing faster than ever. Small businesses in Asia have shown significant innovation and made a vital contribution to driving global trade. The FedEx/JA ITC program provides an essential foundation to help students understand the corporate world, and to pursue their dreams of operating a global business and playing a pivotal role in the future economy of our region.”

“At Junior Achievement, we inspire and prepare young people to succeed, with a focus on teaching them entrepreneurial values and encouraging their creativity. The International Trade Challenge serves as a platform for students to unleash their potential and sharpen their business acumen by devising a market entry plan. The three-day Regional Finals have been exceptionally successful with the support of FedEx Express and their professional volunteers who helped mentor the teams. We look forward to continuing to foster the spirit of entrepreneurship among young people in Asia Pacific with FedEx Express,” said Vivian Lau, Interim President, Junior Achievement Asia Pacific.

Jointly organized by FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) and one of the world’s largest express transportation companies, and JA Worldwide®, the world’s largest non-profit organization dedicated to inspiring and preparing young people to succeed in a global economy, the FedEx/JA ITC provides an opportunity for students to understand business and entrepreneurship. This year, more than 90 FedEx employees volunteered as mentors helping the students understand the concept of international trade and guiding them in the development of their plans. For more information, please visit www.facebook.com/AsiaPacificITC.

About FedEx Express
            FedEx Express is one of the world's largest express transportation companies, providing fast and reliable delivery to more than 220 countries and territories. FedEx Express uses a global air-and-ground network to speed delivery of time-sensitive shipments, by a definite time and date with a money-back guarantee[1].

About FedEx Corp.
            FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) provides customers and businesses worldwide with a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services. With annual revenues of $44 billion, the company offers integrated business applications through operating companies competing collectively and managed collaboratively, under the respected FedEx brand. Consistently ranked among the world's most admired and trusted employers, FedEx inspires its more than 300,000 team members to remain "absolutely, positively" focused on safety, the highest ethical and professional standards and the needs of their customers and communities.


About JA Worldwide® (Junior Achievement)
Junior Achievement is the world's largest organization dedicated to inspiring and preparing young people to succeed in a global economy.  Through a dedicated volunteer network, Junior Achievement provides in-school and after-school programs for students which focus on three key content areas: work readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy. The Junior Achievement worldwide network now serves over 10 million students a year in over 121 countries. For more information, visit www.jaworldwide.org.

Note to Editors:
The panel of judges in the grand final of the competition includes:
-          Mr George Yuen, Council Member, Business Advisory Council, United Nations ESCAP
-          Prof Hugh Thomas, Associate Director, Center for Entrepreneurship, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
-          Mrs Patricia Lau, Deputy Head, Efficiency Unit, Chief Secretary for Administration’s Office
-          Dr Richard R. Vuylsteke, President, The American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong