GRAND RAPIDS — Three MBA students and a professor from Grand Valley State University took second place and won $2,500 in the 2013 NextBillion Case Writing Competition.

The competition recognizes and publishes the best written case studies about business strategies aimed at alleviating poverty, especially in developing countries.

The competition attracted more than 150 people entering individually or as part of a team, representing more than 50 universities and 11 countries.

The Grand Valley team consisted of Paul Mudde, associate professor of management, and three Seidman College of Business MBA students, Eric Grossnickle, Doug Huesdash and Yvette Iyiguhaye. The team’s case, “Hydraid: Safe Water for the Base of the Pyramid,” has been published on

A celebration lunch will be held April 26 at noon on the second floor of the Gordon Gallery in the DeVos Center on Grand Valley’s Pew Grand Rapids Campus.

Here’s the case summary from the competition: “Triple Quest, a joint venture between a manufacturing company and a private investment company, is experimenting with a number of different business models to distribute its proprietary Hydraid water filtration system. Although they have used both non-profit and for-profit business models, the company’s preference would be to develop a for-profit model that would support entrepreneurial activity within the base of the pyramid (BoP) markets. The case discusses the worldwide water crisis and the international organizations involved in addressing this crisis. The case narrows its focus to examine the conditions in Ghana, both in terms of the need for clean water and the entrepreneurial environment.”

The competition is sponsored by the Citi Foundation and administered by GlobaLens, a case publishing division of the William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan. The aim of the competition is to increase the number of academic case studies focused on business approaches to economic and social development.


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