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Homepage / Packing a punch in venture capital contest: Cranfield’s MBA students clinch highest ever finish

Packing a punch in venture capital contest: Cranfield’s MBA students clinch highest ever finish


Becoming venture capitalists for the day was the perfect fit as Cranfield’s MBA students achieved the university’s highest ever finish in the world’s largest venture capital competition.

A six-person team from the University’s School of Management made it into the top 6 worldwide of the Venture Capital Investment Competition earlier this year.

The team reached the in-person VCIC Global Finals in North Carolina after winning the 2022 MBA Europe South Regional Finals – seeing off competition from Otto Beisheim School of Management (Germany), London Business School, Imperial College Business School, Alliance Manchester Business School, and the SDA Bocconi School of Management (Italy).

Cranfield’s team was made up of MBA students Lottie Wood, Matt Cooper, Jared Dally, Deane Chadwick, Qing Zhang, and Daniel Rogers. Students were tasked with assessing investment opportunities and then pitching an investment strategy to the VC judges.

Cranfield was Europe’s sole representative in Global Finals

The team from Cranfield was the only non-US-based team in the Global Finals – with the achievement representing Cranfield’s best ever finish in the competition.

Lottie Wood, a Cranfield School of Management MBA student, said: “The VCIC experience was incredible as it not only built my business and investment knowledge but also helped my confidence develop. Having the opportunity to work with real entrepreneurs and VCs really helped bring classroom learning to life!”

Fellow student and team member Daniel Rogers said: “The chance to compete against the top MBA universities in the world in a challenging real-life situation has been wonderful; to come out having reached the global grand final against top European and international universities was incredible. It’s a testament to the faculty and alumni who have supported us through each step and inspired us to achieve great things.”

The team was coached by alumni and faculty members including Stepan Galaev, Phil Evans, Michael Kenyon, Dan George, and Martin Spiller.

Former MBA student Stepan said: “Congratulations to Cranfield School of Management for achieving new heights at the VCIC this year! It’s a humbling experience being able to give back to the school and support students with the competition.”

Dr Stephanie Hussels, Director of the Bettany Centre for Entrepreneurship and host of the North European VCIC Final, added: “VCIC is a perfect opportunity for MBA students to apply their learning to practice and network with investors, entrepreneurs, and fellow MBAs from around the world. We are extremely proud of the Cranfield VCIC team for holding the flag so high throughout the competition and delivering the best result to date.”

The Global VCIC is the world’s largest venture capital competition with over 120 university and graduate school teams competing. For more information please visit


Bettany Centre for Entrepreneurship

Written By: Tiffany Trethowan

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