Media Releases

“Manulife: Entry Into Asia Challenge” finalists announced

April 24, 2013

Competition hosted by U of T's Rotman School of Management

TORONTO, ON – Manulife Financial is pleased to announce the teams named as finalists in its Manulife: Entry into Asia Challenge. A distinguished panel of independent judges reviewed 46 entries, submitted by teams of university business school students from across Canada, and has selected the seven teams of finalists.

The seven teams will now present their submissions to an elite panel of judges with the winners of the competition being announced on May 22.

“The Manulife: Entry into Asia Challenge” asked undergraduate and graduate business school students at Canadian universities to create a business plan for a Canadian small or medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to expand into any country in Asia. Competing teams will demonstrate their ability to think strategically about entry into Asian markets while demonstrating their understanding of the unique attributes, challenges and realities facing Canadian SMEs.

The University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management is managing this one-time only competition. Additional details on the competition are available at

The finalist teams represent the University of Regina, the Richard Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario, the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto and the University of Waterloo.

The team members are:

Tim Philip, Kira Novak and Barton Soroka
Country for entry: China

James Hammond, Alex Apanovitch, Geoff Calder and Johnny Kim
Country for entry: China

Ian Sin, Ryan Appotive, Melita Cyril and Leslie Wong
Country for entry: Myanmar

William Cheng, Erol Biceroglu, Miranda Fong and Marissa Leung
Country for entry: China

Jiemi Gao and Kevin Zhou
Country for entry: China

Aisha Bukhari, Lak Chinta, Peter Cinat and Aristotle Solomon
Country for entry: Japan

Mutthu Jagdish Ramlingh, Selvin Jebaraj, Darryl Karpel and Ronak Soni
Country for entry: India

Manulife would also like to extend their sincerest thank you and appreciation to the judges who reviewed the 46 submissions and chose the seven finalists.

The judges were:

Danielle Goldfarb, Associate Director, Global Commerce Centre, Conference Board of Canada;

Mark Healy, Managing Partner, Torque Consulting Group;

Stephen Young, Research Professor of International Business, University of Glasgow; as well as

A. Rebecca Reuber is Professor of Strategic Management at the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto and acted as Faculty Advisor to the Competition.

About Manulife Financial

Manulife Financial is a leading Canada-based financial services group with principal operations in Asia, Canada and the United States. Clients look to Manulife for strong, reliable, trustworthy and forward-thinking solutions for their most significant financial decisions. Our international network of employees, agents and distribution partners offers financial protection and wealth management products and services to millions of clients. We also provide asset management services to institutional customers. Funds under management by Manulife Financial and its subsidiaries were C$532 billion (US$535 billion) as at December 31, 2012. The Company operates as Manulife Financial in Canada and Asia and primarily as John Hancock in the United States.

Manulife Financial Corporation trades as ‘MFC’ on the TSX, NYSE and PSE, and under ‘945’ on the SEHK. Manulife Financial can be found on the Internet at

About the Rotman School of Management

The Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto is redesigning business education for the 21st century with a curriculum based on Integrative Thinking. Located in the world’s most diverse city, the Rotman School fosters a new way to think that enables the design of creative business solutions. The School is currently raising $200 million to ensure that Canada has the world-class business school it deserves. For more information, visit


For more information, contact:

Ken McGuffin
Manager, Media Relations
Rotman School of Management
University of Toronto
Voice 416.946.3818
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