Chicago Booth Claims MBA Stock Picker Victory

CHAPEL Hill, N.C. (TheStreet) -- The University of Chicago's Booth School of Business defeated 14 of the nation's top MBA programs Friday in a stockpicker competition in Chapel Hill, N.C.

Students Kyle Akin, Aaron Bianco and Mac Elatab cruised to a unanimous No. 1 performance in the final round of the Alpha Challenge as judges from various asset management firms favored the Booth team's mock pitch to take a long position on DigitalGlobe ( DGI) and a short position on GenCorp ( GY).

The event, hosted by the University of North Carolina, showcased top student talent, many of whom said they hoped to eventually work in investment management.

It was a "great" contest with a high level of competition and challenging questions from the judges, Elatab said. When asked if his Booth team would celebrate the victory, Elatab chuckled and said, "I think there's a Tar Heels game in town."

Each business school represented consisted of three MBA students, who received a universe of 90 publicly traded companies on Nov. 3 and submitted by Nov. 11 a power point presentation pitching one company to "short" and one company to hold "long."

Friday morning featured a preliminary round of 15 teams, including Yale University, University of Virginia's Darden School of Business -- who finished second and third, respectively -- UNC's Kenan-Flagler Business School and Columbia University, among others.

The 15 teams were split into four different groups, in which they presented a 15-minute verbal pitch and answered judges' questions for an additional 20. The top team from each group advanced to the final round.

Judges throughout the tournament represented buy-side firms, including Fidelity Investments, T. Rowe Price, Carlson Capital, William Blair, and others.

Shares of DigitalGlobe, a provider of government and commercial earth imagery products, gained 3.6% to close Friday at $36.81. Aerospace and defense manufacturer GenCorp tacked on 0.4% to 17.69.

-- Written by Joe Deaux in Chapel Hill, N.C.

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