L'Oréal E-Strat Challenge International Final

Published: 20 April 2004

McGill University team will head to Paris

L'Oréal Canada is pleased to send a team of three McGill University students to represent North America at the International Final of the L'Oréal E-Strat Challenge in Paris on April 22. Nikkie Lu, Vincent Trépanier and Eric Chan, known collectively as the MCC team (McGill Consultants), defeated almost 500 undergraduate teams internationally, in order to compete at the international final of the fourth edition of the L'Oréal E-Strat Challenge. At the Paris Final, the world's top 14 undergraduate and graduate teams will present their business plan to L'Oréal senior executives and compete for the international title.

Initiated in 2000, the L'Oréal E-Strat Challenge is an online business and strategy competition for undergraduate and MBA students worldwide. This competition gives participants the opportunity to lead a global cosmetics company through a simulated experience and brings them into direct contact with L'Oréal recruiters.

Participating teams face real-time market situations on the Web over a period of two months. The challenge is to work as a team, discuss strategy and take tactical decisions to ensure that their company stays on track compared with the competition — four other virtual cosmetics businesses.

Nikkie Lu, Vincent Trépanier and Eric Chan are respectively finance, computer engineering, and history and finance students at McGill University. Since January the team has successfully navigated the business realities facing L'Oréal executives daily — including pricing policy, production issues, research & development, finance and marketing — while consistently demonstrating a high level of strategic thinking.

After two months of hard work, the MCC team is anxiously awaiting the final competition. "The chance to go head to head with the top undergraduate students in the world is a great honour. Meeting with L'Oréal senior executives allows us to probe deeper into the industry and provides us with a tremendous learning experience," remarks Vincent Trépanier, a member of the MCC team.

Strategic training and recruitment

McGill University will compete against 6 other undergraduate teams internationally, namely: École Centrale (France), Warsaw School of Economics (Poland), Sabanci University (Turkey), Universidad del Pacifico (Peru), Beijing Foreign Studies University (China), and Universitas Indonesia (Indonesia). Overall, there will be 12 countries and 18 nationalities represented at the L'Oréal E-Strat Final.

The L'Oréal E-Strat Challenge immerses participants in an experience true to life at L'Oréal. Teams come to learn first-hand that L'Oréal encourages innovation, rewards risk-taking and offers an environment of continuous learning, challenge and personal growth. Vincent Trépanier noted, "Being creative and innovative has also been key to our success; taking unorthodox decisions really paid off!"

This competition is not only an extraordinary opportunity for participants to lead a cosmetics company in the virtual realm, but an equally rewarding experience for L'Oréal recruiters to meet promising new talent. Since its inception, E-Strat has enabled L'Oréal to identify and recruit 69 E-Strat players from 32 countries.

Note to editors

L'Oréal Canada is a wholly owned subsidiary of L'Oréal Group, the world's leading cosmetics company. A leader in the Canadian cosmetics market, L'Oréal Canada offers its customers a wide range of choices with its diverse portfolio of brands and encompasses all aspects of beauty. The company's prestigious brand portfolio includes L'Oréal Professionnel, Redken, Matrix, Kérastase, L'Oréal Paris, Garnier, Ombrelle, Maybelline New York, Lancôme, Biotherm, Giorgio Armani, Ralph Lauren, Cacharel, Kiehl's since 1851, Laboratoires Vichy and La Roche-Posay Laboratoire Pharmaceutique.

McGill University, located in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, has earned an international reputation for scholarly achievement and scientific discovery. Founded in 1821, McGill is one of two Canadian members of the American Association of Universities. The 22 faculties and professional schools offer more than 300 programs, from the undergraduate to the doctoral level, and our professors have received their education from leading academic centres around the world. McGill attracts students from over 150 countries, creating one of the most dynamic and diverse student bodies in North America. There are approximately 18,000 full-time undergraduate students and 5,000 full-time graduate students.


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