Conquering the financial modelling challenge

Dhaka,  Sat,  03 December 2016
Published : 01 Dec 2016, 18:57:54

Conquering the financial modelling challenge

Md. Tahmid Kabir


On November 22, 2016 'IDLC presents BLUEPRINTS 2.0' in association with Dhaka Bank Limited  organised its grand finale at the Plaza Area of North South University where a huge crowd of finance enthusiasts and professionals from financial and non-financial institutions witnessed the three winning teams of the second installment of the only financial modelling competition in Bangladesh.

Irrespective of whether an individual is a shareholder or an investor, a business student or a financial analyst, the best way to gain insight about how a company is doing is to analyse the company's financial statements such as income statements, balance sheets and cash flow statements. Financial modelling is the skill that enables one to forecast future financial statements and project a picture of a company or a project for the next few years. Even though financial modelling is a skill that is a must for any financial analyst, never has there been any initiative taken that would help the undergraduate business students learn this skill till NSU Finance Club came up with Blueprints, a financial modelling competition presented by IDLC. The main intention of initiating this competition was to focus young minds on the potential opportunities in the financial sector of the country.

This year, 150+ teams from over 15 different universities spanning 5 divisions took part in the competition. “The aim is to put business students, and not just finance majors, in real life scenarios and have them implement all the knowledge learned in classrooms,” said Tashrif Ul Islam, President of NSU Finance Club.

The competition started with its first round workshop on October 28, 2016 at the auditorium of the North South University where around 500 participants were present. Group CMO of IDLC Finance Limited Jane Alam Romel and the management trainees from the Structured Finance Department conducted the workshop. The workshop was followed by the case which all the participating teams had to solve for the first round of the competition. The case was to formulate a business plan for any type of business they wanted. Out of the 152 teams, 32 teams made it to the second round. The second round workshop was held on November 4 which  was  conducted by the structured finance experts from IDLC Finance Ltd. For round 2, participants were given a case on the hotel industry in the context of Bangladesh which they had to solve and present on November 11 in front of three panels of judges. Nine teams went to the final of the competition  from  these 32 teams. The three winning teams of Blueprints 2.0 were awarded for their achievement in front of over 250 participants of the conference.

The winners of the evening were Team ICONS (Champions), Team Wunderkind (1st runners-up), Team AllSpark (2nd runners-up). Maheer  Tazoer from Team ICONS said, “Blueprints has provided an unique opportunity to finance majors like us. The competition  has made us experienced and we are truly honoured to emerge as champions.” Participants from the other teams also praised the uniqueness of the competition and said they were proud to represent their respective universities on a national level competition.

Chairman of BOT, NSU Azim Uddin Ahmed, IDLC Finance Limited CEO Arif Khan, Vice Chancellor of NSU Professor Dr. Atiqul Islam, Director of Student Affairs at NSU Professor Dr. Md. Emdadul Haq, Professor Dr. Md. Mahboob Rahman and Faculty Advisor of NSU Finance Club and Faculty at NSU School of Business and Economics (SBE) Shahran Abu Sayeed delivered enlightening speeches addressing the crowd.

Azim Uddin Ahmed, Chairman of NSU Board of Trustees, talked about the importance of studying finance for the future of Bangladesh and praised  NSU Finance Club for their brilliant achievements ever since commencement.  Emdadul Haq, Director of Student Affairs, talked about the importance of student activities on the future of a young undergraduate student.  CEO of IDLC Finance Ltd.  Arif Khan talked about the country's rapid growth and the importance of IDLC's investment on young minds through competitions such as Blueprints.

NSU finance Club is a newly established co-curricular club under the NSU SBE which aims to help students experience professional development in terms of skills, ethics and personality. 'IDLC presents Blueprints' is the flagship competition of NSU Finance Club which the club is organising for the second time.

The writer is a second  year BBA student at North South University,  tahmidkabir19@gmail.com
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